We say "a table" but of course anyone who has actually been to the Particular will know, space there is at a premium and our hosts had decided that the best way of getting bums on seats was to squeeze everyone (about 15 of us I think) round one big table. All very chummy, and Clare (who was in charge) made everyone feel not just welcome but generally well disposed to our immediate neighbours too. Good practice for the enforced jollity of the Jubilee street parties we are surely all looking forward to so fervently.
We were welcomed with a cocktail (a welcome but rather sweet collins) and some lovely radishes with smoky aubergine dip. Starters were ham hock with mackerel, a combination we hadn't considered before but one that worked bloody well and potted broad beans, which was like the essence of spring in – um – a pot.
For mains, lots of people seemed to suddenly get in touch with their inner vegetarian and opt for the fresh asparagus tortellini, served with goat curd and sauce vierge. This was being hand-rolled as we arrived and looked great, although by all accounts the pasta dough was a little on the salty side. Your reviewer – whose inner vegetarian hasn't been in touch for years – was treated to a fabulous pile of lamb sweetbreads and asparagus on an oversized vol au vent base: really lovely, and easily the match of any ris de veau he's had in France.
Pudding was a chocolate thing. But there had been rather a lot of wine-based conviviality by this stage so you'll have to forgive the vagueness. The menu says chocolate and raspberry cake. That sounds right. There was some soured cream on it I think. Or maybe yoghurt. Standard apologies for failing to take notes.
Anyway: the New Cross Dining Co comes heartily recommended, and, at £25 felt like great value (yes, even with the booking fee). This weekend's second outing at the Particular is sold out, alas, but you can email the organisers to go on the waiting list in case anyone's daft enough to cancel. Clare will also make sure you hear about the next pop-up, which is likely to be in July or August, at a yet-to-be-decided venue. You can probably watch this space too.