It was the smell that the table noticed first, which was reminiscent of a burnt rubber tyre. This would be exciting enough in the pit lane of the Goodwood Revival, but not what you expect in a fashionable Mayfair restaurant. My wife was hosting the departure of a much-loved member of her magazine. It started on a high with old stories being told and personalities dissected with the assistance of some excellent cocktails. In fact, all went swimmingly until the food turned up. She had ordered Chicken Paillard (in my view, like Wiener Schnitzel, a brave choice), but what she hadn’t expected was that it would be accompanied by a stench, wafting ahead of its arrival. Once it was on the table, with its latticework of burnt charcoal stripes, it was clearly not fit for purpose. Not wishing to dampen the fun around the table, she took a bite. It was nasty and inedible. The waitress nodded in sympathy and took it to be replaced.