We're slung up above Borough Market, snugly wrapped in the linen table cloths of Roast.
Despite the speciality its name alludes to, the anodyne decor and worthy hand dryers, replete with singed wooden explanations, hardly scream the sizzle and pop of flesh and spit.
We're an odd group of hacks, summoned to dissect a preview of two dinners to celebrate English Wine Week (May 23-May 31).
The twinkling Vampyre, the Englishman abroad and myself; the Unkempt Wig.
Roast has long been paired with Chapel Down and the brand has dutifully stumped up the booze on this occasion.
To take care of it, lest we run amock spraying female diners willy nilly like crazed Hamiltons spurting our victory, they've sent their Best Man.
He's a svelte, rugger-ready chap, vaguely reminiscent of an Uncle Monty some years before the ravages of Withnail.
But rather than keep us in check, his naked passion catches us off guard.
We're completely taken in by his disarming enthusiasm for his situation and the wine that lubricates it.
Chapel Down fizz foams up to tickle swollen, well-covered Carlingford oysters.
It's a wine ("Roast" Chapter Two 2009) produced specifically for the restaurant and files our tongues sharp to carve up the lemon salts of the shellfish.
The Englishman slurps them with gusto, bombastically praising the porky treats.
In contrast, the Vampyre sucks them delicately between his lips without a word, a bite barely visible.
Next up it's onto a white - ("Roast" Bacchus Reserve 2013). On its own it's a lawnmower spray of cut grass on the tongue. But mollified by Grimsby smoked haddock croquettes with a pungent pepper salsa something extraordinary occurs.
The Vampyre's eyes brighten as though contemplating a virgin neck. He can't get enough and, for a moment I fear for my own unshaven scrag.
Fortunately the loud shirt of The Englishman is enough to keep him at bay, swelling over his increasingly satisfied paunch, a floral print barrier of sufficient proportion.
Whipped up by our host, the second course is cleared with much anticipation of the wine.
But the English red is the one sloppy note of the proceedings. It's a true taste of the country.
Agricultural; the burning rubber of a tyre fire.
Our St Petersburg-born sommelier does his best. But even skilfully blunted with slow cooked lamb shoulder and braised cabbage, Chapel's Union Red 2013 wounds.
Our host talks of bravery, but the Englishman and I taste only rank barbecues while the Vampyre's glass stays semi-sipped. He's after red liquid of a different sort.
Fortunately the distraction of Yorkshire rhubarb and custard tart smacked about by the fresh Nectar Late Harvest 2013 is enough to save my jugular once more.
The wine is the best of the evening. Suddenly I can't tell the Englishman enough about it.
My lubricated tongue runs away and the feeling of fun steals over us all. The Vampyre, grinning like a loon, regales us with tales of little known unknowables, the subject of a book he's written.
Jubilant, we leave, bubbling with joy. It's pricey at £85, but a more-or-less certain high.
Roast and Chapel Down's English Wine Week dinners take place on Tuesday, May 26 and Wednesday, May 27 from 7.30pm.
For bookings call 020 3763 5326 or via roast-restaurant.com.