LivingTravelThe medieval banquet in London

The medieval banquet in London

The Medieval Banquet is an evening of underground medieval dinners and entertainment on St Katherine’s docks near Tower Bridge. You’ll have over two hours of singers, contortionists, jugglers, and magicians to entertain you as you enjoy a four-course meal.

This is a night of theater and gastronomy and it is not a history lesson and there is no joke about the royalty of the time.

Where is the medieval banquet?

Dirección: The Medieval Banquet, Ivory House, St Katharine Docks , Londres E1W 1BP

St Katherine Docks used to host valuable cargo from around the world and had a reputation for wealth. The medieval banquet is held in the Victorian ivory house built in 1852. This was one of the warehouses designed with wide vaults to store luxury items and these vaults are now the site of the restaurant. This means that the restaurant is divided into smaller seating areas on each side and the entertainment takes place along the central corridor.

Keep in mind, it’s worth getting there early and taking a stroll around St Katherine’s docks, as there are some amazing boats moored here, almost next to the Tower of London.

The medieval banquet is Wednesday through Sunday evening, with an earlier start time on Sundays. Families are encouraged to reserve on Sundays.

At the arrived

The doors open 30-45 minutes before the entertainment starts, but they arrive quickly as there is a lot to do at that time. At the door, they give you a ticket that marks your rest area and then they take you downstairs to your table. Each section has two long tables, so it will sit with other parties. Get to know your new friends as they will laugh and dance together later.

Our section is named after the Tower of London and the opposite was Kensington Palace.

Once you’ve got your seats assigned, you can hit the rails and pick up a costume, as dressing up is fun whatever your age. Men have a lot of long tabards that are great for any size, and women’s dresses have a lot of stretch, so there should be something for everyone. There are also costumes for children. Please note that there is an additional wardrobe rental charge of £ 10, which you can pay for the night. If donning an ankle-length velvet gown isn’t for you, there are also crowns to buy so you can still join.


Before the main entertainment there are jugs of water on the table, but if you want something else to drink, the bar is open.

Sitting at the end of the room is King Henry VIII who watches over us all from his throne. Don’t be shy as he is quite friendly, and you can sit with him and take a picture of yourself.

Back at their table, a gentleman approaches to welcome everyone and show card tricks. He asks about birthdays and special celebrations, so let him know if you need anything special.

You will be introduced to your server at night, who openly encourages you to shout “Wench!” when you need her to come. The staff are a real asset here, as everyone is friendly and polite, putting you at ease in a somewhat surreal setting.

The show

When the entertainment begins, you must remain in your seat during the presentations, but you can get up while the food is being served. There is entertainment between each of the courses culminating in a sword fight finale.

Instead of clapping, you are asked to bang your fists on the table and make a lot of noise to show your appreciation.

Performances include singers and musicians performing songs from the Middle Ages, ‘jesters’ juggling upside down, and a contortionist twisting her body inside a large hoop. Some of the entertainment is a cross between opera and circus skills, and everything is of a high standard. Some of the singers will walk between the tables and sit down to join the diners.

Food and drink

There are mugs of beer on the table for all drinks and you can order more glasses, if needed. Each table has large jugs of water, then jugs of beer and jugs of red and white wine are brought to the table and replenished as often as needed. Kids can have apple juice which my daughter liked as she looked like she was drinking cider.

There is a ceremony about bringing the food while your ‘wench’ stands in front of the tables with large cauldrons before hitting the table to be served.

The first course is a hearty vegetable soup with thick bread that we had to break up and share. Spoons are not provided. The next course is a pate served with cheese, tomato, and arugula salad. There are vegetarian options, so book this in advance if you have particular dietary requirements. The main one is chicken and roasted vegetables; dessert is apple pie or ice cream for the kids.

It is not the end

When you’ve finished your meal and won the sword fight, your ‘wench’ will have them all dance with them: first circle of dance, followed by a time of freestyle dancing to pop music.

Something to change?

Bathrooms are spacious and have a useful mirrored area to help you check out your outfit, but actual bathrooms could use some improvement. There is also no wifi and limited phone reception. However, these are minor issues in a great experience.

As is common in the travel industry, the writer received ancillary services for review purposes. While you have not influenced this review, believes in full disclosure of all potential conflicts of interest. For more information, see our Ethics Policy.

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