Franco’s Jazz Lounge evening are what summer dreams are made of…

Oh, summer! Here you are. There’s a great deal to be said for long days. Yet, warm evenings are one of my favourite things. Living in the city means we are spoilt for choice when it comes to how we spend our summer nights. I’m here to say that I’ve found a place. There’s good food, great wine, toe-tapping live jazz and it has also been serving London for 70 years. I suggest we make a beeline for Franco’s, Mayfair.

Franco's Jazz in the cityFranco’s Jazz Lounge evenings are what your quintessential summer dreams are made of. They’ve introduced live sessions which will run from now until 27th July. What does this mean? Ensembles such as Matthew VanKan, S-J Jazz Trio and Andrew Osbourne performing American songbook classics, swing and jazz while you enjoy a three-course Italian meal (£50 per person) with sommelier-paired wines. Only there for the music? It’s a mere £15 per person.

I spent a wonderful evening here by invitation. Arriving sans date and expecting to sit alone through my meal I was prepared to have a different evening from the one I did. Within minutes I was invited to join another table; it’s simply the Italian way. No one eats alone. Especially when there’s music.

My starter of a selection of cured meats was a good choice. Thinly sliced, and wonderfully flavoured. I opted for grilled rump of lamb with aubergine pureé and peppers with a side of English asparagus. I stuck with the chef’s recommended medium rare. It was simply divine. Seasonal asparagus was tender and the aubergine delightful on the tongue. Tiramisu and coffee were the perfect end to a fabulous meal with impeccably paired wine. Although I didn’t get a chance to try it, I have it on good authority that Franco’s serves a pretty mean and rather authentic Italian vegan and vegetarian menu.

As we tucked in the live band entertained in every sense of the word. Classics such as Summertime, Natural Woman and Valerie brought the house down. If we were eating we were eating out of the band’s hand. Every table in the room tapped and sang along. Even some 90 minutes later, with a short break in between, I didn’t want the fun to stop. It was apparent that one one else did either as the room clapped for an encore. We were happily obliged and the dancing continued for one more melody. The evening was spirited and no one was ready to go home.

It was mid-week when I was here and yet it was a full house. To experience this I highly recommend reserving your table in advance. You can do so here: I say, go, eat, sing and dance in any order you wish. Whichever way it happens you’ll leave happier than when you arrived. For me, it’s been unforgettable.

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