Bring on the clowns

We love it when a minor royal ups the people-watching ante when we check out a new restaurant. The night Esquire visited new cabaret club Circus in Covent Garden Princess Beatrice (accompanied by bodyguard and obligatory boat and ballet-shoe wearing posse) was there. Had somebody tipped her off we were coming?

Naturally, she’d nabbed the best seats in the house - at the big long table which doubles as a stage, on which fire jugglers, stockinged trapeze artists and a lady who squashes herself into a small box loon about while diners tuck in to the Pan American faire: snapper ceviche, short ribs and seafood jambalaya with annatto (it's a kind of peppery seed).

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The Tom Dixon-designed space itself is pretty memorable too, boasting mirror balls, a bar that looks like a staircase and animal table legs and hairy walls (which reference the building’s past - it used to house the animals appearing at the nearby opera house).

Meanwhile some of the cocktails, (from Bungalow 8 team Worldwide) come in punchbowls as they’re apparently meant for sharing. Sadly, no one told us this with the result that after a few of them the multi-mirrored toilets induced a moment of mild panic when, try as we might, we couldn’t quite find our way out. Make sure you drop some breadcrumbs, Hansel and Gretel style, on the way in.

www.circus-london.co.uk