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Dinner at The Tokyo Club

A seated dinner was organised at The Tokyo Club on Thursday, 19th October. The bar opened at 6:15 pm, an hour before dinner. Twenty-five gentlemen and six ladies enjoyed a full-course French dinner, accompanied by good Claret, Châteaux Cadillac 2003, the Club’s house wine, lasting 2 hours. Three new members were introduced: Pedro da Costa (Balliol, Oxford, 2000 and Wolfson, Cambridge, 2006), Daniel Gallimore (Christ Church, Oxford, 1984 and Linacre, Oxford, 1997) and Alex Miller (Somerville, Oxford, 1997).

Hors-d’Oeuvre Variés
Consommé Madarilène
Filet de Daurade poêlé Beurre blanc
Tournedos Nichette, Légumes
Salade de Saison

Cost: 6,500 yen

The above dinner was just one of the Society’s monthly events organised as part of the 2nd half programme for 2006, i.e. it was not a special event, and no VIPs or senior visitors from the Universities were present. However, I think a few words about the Society’s relationship with The Tokyo Club would be appropriate.

The Tokyo Club, which was founded in May 1884, was in fact the birthplace of The Cambridge & Oxford Society, Tokyo. In the late 19th century, both Japanese and British graduates of the Universities used to get together in the Club’s bar, and at the turn of the century (probably in 1905) they agreed officially to found a joint club and to name it The Cambridge & Oxford Society. (If you would like to know why Cambridge came before Oxford, please read the history page of the Society’s website: Subsequently, The Tokyo Club became the main venue for the Society’s Annual Dinners and other informal activities until January 1942.

After the War, in February 1950, the C&O Society was reconstituted, and it was decided that its activities would take place at various locations in Tokyo. The membership at that time was relatively small and predominantly male. Since then, the Society has grown dramatically in size and now numbers almost 300 members, many of whom are, happily, lady graduates of both Universities. When Tokyo Club moved to new premises in Roppongi in June 2005, the rules were relaxed to allow ladies access as guests to the Club’s dining room and certain other function halls in the evening. The C&O Committee decided to take advantage of these changes in the rules to organise two dinners a year at this historical venue.

Accordingly, a dinner attended by thirty-nine people was held on Thursday, 29th September, and this was followed by our 2005 Christmas Dinner on Thursday, 8th December. Princess Takamado (Girton, Cambridge, 1972) graciously attended the dinner. So too did the Society’s President, Sir Graham Fry (Brasenose, Oxford, 1968), British Ambassador to Japan, accompanied by Lady Fry, and sixty-one members and their guests enjoyed a Christmas feast. It was a very successful and joyful evening with delicious French cuisine and lots of desserts. Colourful Christmas flowers added seasonal atmosphere to each of the tables. There was a lottery, the winner of which took home a magnum of Champagne; runners up received vases of Christmas flowers. Our next visit to The Tokyo Club was on Tuesday, 11th April 2006 for the triennial GM and dinner. Sir Graham took the chair at 5 p.m., and thirty-five members attended (details of the GM can be found on this site).

(Reporter: Hon. Sec. T. Nakamura,)

Posted in | Submitted by tim.minton on Wed, 2006-10-18 15:00.
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