Style: Modern European, fine dining
Budget: Very expensive (£600 for two, though we did drink a lot)
Venue and atmosphere: Inviting and elegant dining room with soft tones and plenty of natural light. White tablecloths and silver service but not too stuffy.
Service: This is the kind of place where they read what kind of people you are and what service you want and behave accordingly. We were clearly there for a good time and they gave us one. Our waitress talked, joked and laughed with us. When my cousin wanted to swap one of the tasting menu options, they brought it as an extra course. When it came to cheese, they saw we’d been having a few craft beers and suggested a beer matching instead of wine. Nice touch.
Food: The food was of course delicious and immaculately presented, but for a restaurant at this level and price, I felt that the food was a bit safe. There weren’t any dishes that made me think ‘wow, I never would have thought of that.'
A decadent dish of Warm Bantam’s Egg with celeriac, arbois, dried ham and truffle was rich, comforting and bursting with umami. Jowl of Pork with chestnuts, girolles and pears was everything you might want in a pork dish: salty, tender and crispy with some sweet fruit to cut through the fat. Brown Sugar Tart with stem ginger ice cream was as good as it sounds, the sweet and nutty tart lifted by fresh and spicy ginger and a great balance of creamy and crisp textures.
Drink: We did the matching wines (plus some beers and cocktails). They were beautifully balanced and expertly matched. A light and fresh gruner veltliner complimented a dish of Hand Dived Scallop Ceviche with seaweed and herb oil and frozen English wasabi. Citrus notes are always good with seafood and a hint of white pepper in the wine went particularly well with the English wasabi. A refreshing blend of grenache, syrah and cinsault with raspberry and blackberry notes offered some light relief paired with a gamey dish of Aged Pigeon with quince, red leaves and vegetables.
In a nutshell: The service and the venue are faultless, but the food lacks the wow factor for a place at this level.
Out of 10: 7