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.