Apple days

Daily life in Savile Row. From Philip Norman’s new biography of Paul McCartney

[B]y far the greatest extravagance was that of the Beatles themselves. Whenever John and Yoko were expected, Beluga caviar had to be fetched from Fortnum & Mason in Piccadilly. On one occasion, when the pair failed to arrive as scheduled, the two in-house cordon bleu cooks spread the entire contents of a £15 pot on a single round of toast and ate it themselves.

During a trip to California, George met a troupe of Hell’s Angels and invited them to London, promising them the hospitality of 3 Savile Row. They duly arrived on their motorbikes, and terrorised the house for a week, consuming its food and drink in epic quantities and sexually harrassing its secretaries, all under the inviolable protection of their Beatle host…

One small example sums up the general climate: a certain brand of vodka popular with Apple senior executives was available only at a restaurant in Knightsbridge which refused to sell it as a takeaway. So two underlings would be sent there to eat lunch and bring back the prized bottle, their food, wine and return taxi fares having roughly quadrupled its cost.

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