If the timing of ABC Family’s movie marathons is any indication, J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series is intrinsically linked to Christmas. Knowing this, Warner Bros. recently announced a chance for fans to eat a Christmas feast in the actual Great Hall from the Harry Potter movies on Dec. 3. Dinner, preceeded by a studio tour, will take place on the original set, and afterward guests will enjoy desserts and Butterbeer. The event sold out more or less immediately, even though tickets were a whopping £230, which is slightly more than $350. (Tickets for 2016 will go on sale soon, so start knitting that Weasley sweater.)
It’s no wonder fans jumped at the opportunity: Rowling’s fantastical descriptions of the decorations, food, and grounds at Christmas are among the most memorable passages from the books. In Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Rowling gives a moutwatering rundown of the menu: “A hundred fat, roast turkeys; mountains of roast and boiled potatoes; platters of chipolatas; tureens of buttered peas; silver boats of thick, rich gravy and cranberry sauce—and stacks of wizard crackers every few feet along the table.” In Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, she illustrates the enchanting mood inside Hogwarts: “Thick streamers of holly and mistletoe were strung along the corridors, mysterious lights shone from inside every suit of armor, and the Great Hall was filled with its usual twelve Christmas trees, glittering with golden stars.” The corresponding scenes in the movies are no less enticing.
If you’re channeling Moaning Myrtle because you didn’t manage to snag at ticket to this year’s feast, perhaps reading the “festive menu” for the Warner Bros. event will bring you some comfort. Attendants will choose between a “ham hock and broad bean terrine” and a radicchio and watercress salad for starters, and between roast turkey with cumin glazed carrots and a vegetarian lasagna for their main course. No doubt the food will be delicious—but it’s not exactly what Rowling was talking about when she wrote, in the first book, “Harry had never in all his life had such a Christmas dinner.”