Beyond the Waterfall by Bombas and Parr, Westfield

There is one Christmas experience in London this year which has been on top of everyone’s list. Westfield and Bombas & Parr is not a likely partnership, but ‘Beyond the Waterfall’ is an immersive cocktail odyssey that miraculously matches the two brands.

Beyond the Waterfall

Tickets cost £15 for an hour long journey within the magical installation. You will row through a waterfall, meet wondrous characters and be treated to exciting gifts along the way.

Beyond the Waterfall

Commenting on the experience, Harry Parr, partner of Bompas & Parr, said: “Christmas is obviously a magical time of year, but many people find it hugely predictable, so we’ve designed a radical new form of escapism that still evokes the emotions and nostalgia of the season. The group activity draws people together, with a real sense of discovery and emotion associated with gift-giving and an indulgent treat at its heart.”

Beyond the Waterfall

The drinks, served to you by alluring mermen, are surprisingly tasty… We enjoyed ‘The Old Man & The Sea’ a straight up drink made with rum, rye, sweet vermouth, maraschino, benedictine and bitters. The ‘Shipwreck Sour’ is an exotic take on a traditional sour with brandy, coral calvados, creme de peche and egg white. For something extra pretty opt for the ‘Floating Gold’ which arrives with gold leaf sugar crystal!

Tickets are are priced at £15 per person. This includes a 60 minute adventure and two bespoke cocktails. Beyond the Waterfall runs until 23rd December and bookable slots are every 15 minutes with last entry at 21:00 each evening. More information and book tickets here.

Hot on the Highstreet Week 187: Best of January Sales

If you are brave enough to be heading out into the dangerous world of the post-Christmas sales here are some of the best shops to look out for and all the details you need.

1. Selfridges – online 25 December and in store 26 December, 9am-9pm, 30% off and more

2. Harvey Nichols – 26 December, 10am-8pm, up to 50% off

3. Liberty – 26 December, 12noon – 8pm, up to 50% off

4. Urban Outfitters – 24 December, 9am-9pm, up to 50% off

5. Westfield London – 26 December, 8am-11pm, up to 50% off

6. Dover Street Market – 27 December, 11am-7pm, up to 70% off

7. Gap – now on, 9am-9pm, up to 60 % off

8. Harrods – 26 December, 10am-8pm, up to 50% off

9. John Lewis – online 5pm 24 December and in store 27 December, 9am-9pm , 50% off

10. Browns – online 23 December and in store 27 December, 10am-7pm, up to 50 % off

The Calf, Westfield Stratford

When I visited, The Calf was enjoying the calm before the storm. Just a few days later I knew the Olympics would kick off and all the Westfield Stratford restaurants and bars would suddenly become manically busy.

Arriving at Stratford station, I had a joint surge of excitement and annoyance… it was my first time at this giant shopping centre and with it comes an awesome vista of the Olympic stadium… however I just can’t accept that this East London shopping mall isn’t appropriately named Eastfield, it would have been so fitting instead reusing the name of the first complex in Shepherd’s Bush.

The Calf is part of the Geronimo Inns Group and is the smaller sister of The Cow, also housed in Westfield Stratford. This pop-up pub-bar seems to have it sorted… a low key trendy pub serving up tasty British grub and a good pint… oh and a few stylish London-esque cocktails for the girls that pop in.

We ordered almost everything from the menu, I kid not. To be fair the list is quite brief, but when the waiter had to join a second table to ours, we knew we’d gone too far. It isn’t a traditional starter, main pudding format… more of a get-whatever-you-like-whenever-you-like. Perfect for picking while enjoying a drink and good company. The sharing boards are the winners, with a choice of Butchers Board, Fishmonger or Grocer…we favoured the latter… a selection of premium cheeses and insanely good hummus, chutney and coleslaw. The Tomato, Mozzarella and Basil Salad was delicious with perfectly ripe tomatoes, soft creamy cheese and plenty of moreish pesto dressing. Warning: the soft and salty potato wedges are served with a dangerously addictive roasted garlic mayo… which I couldn’t resist finishing off… the strong garlic taste remained in my mouth for days after. Marinated Chicken and Avocado Wrap was rather average… a mush of meat and avocado with little seasoning, disappointing as I adore avocado.

The desserts are slightly more posh: Marshmallows drizzled in Dark Chocolate Sauce… simple but effective for an after dinner sugar kick and Lemon Posset with Raspberries, the most delicious citrus sweet pudding with the silkiest, creamiest texture.

The Calf is a bit rough around the edges but this is what gives this eatery its character and charm… I predict it will outlive its pop-up expectancy, well here’s hoping anyway as it is a great asset to the Westfield Stratford restaurant scene.

Visit the Calf website here for more information.