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tony h

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Everything posted by tony h

  1. Chavot - yes Lunch not pricey - £30 or there abouts. dinner more expensive but wine is ridiculous
  2. was good when it opened - but last few lunches were fairly lame gordon-by-the-numbers kind of place suggest you go to Capital just around the corner - costs about the same if not less for lunch (& they do lunch on saturday) - but frankly its a world apart and well worth looking foward to
  3. I was looking for somewhere nice near Portsmouth. Had thought of going here but now not so sure. Anyone been recently or can anyone recommend something else?
  4. Anyone know of a good on-line wine retailer - i need to send some presents Thanks Tony
  5. artickoke creme brulee with candied vegetables at grand vefour
  6. its £625 plus VAT oh - they mentioned introducing a vacpack machine for the home market at around £500 sometime soon
  7. dumb question - what's a superbag? I don't what they but I'm pretty sure i want one
  8. 550 euro for two at Pierre Gagnaire's a couple of years ago - sublime Something like 800 euro's at Michel Bras but that included a room - it takes somewhere very special to charge you that and you come away thinking its a bargain.
  9. oh - kind of a shag & a pizza please type of place...
  10. I think its now the York & Albany - or is that a separate place?
  11. agree - it can be an expensive night out (went Friday evening) but I reckon I saved a fortune. For instance Benares chicken tikka was almost indistinguishable from supermarket versions – so that’s £100+ I saved form not going there. Then again one of our friends managed to get stuffed and pissed on freebies – she gave her crowns away. Oh, the gift of the gab. The lowest of the low point was Gary Rhodes doing the hard sell on white tomato soup – one of the worst things I’ve ever tasted. Can’t think of any suitable non-libellous description (sorry- meant to post a warning). The best dish I tried was scallops w lentils & chilli from Theo Randall - sublime. Michel Roux stood next his book stall not talking to anyone. Oh, and Ramsay seems to be coming to Camden – Angela Hartnett’s got a new place near Parkway/Albany – maybe the one that looks abandoned/half-done. So – hurrah for Camden, I think…
  12. From ja_rtw on another topic: Had a superb lunch at Vieux Logis in Tremolat near Sarlat. Each course had 3 separate small dishes with about 4 or 5 courses to the meal and all for something like 34 euro. There's no choice but the food was so good it really wasn't a problem. Lovely restaurant. Can;t say the same for Le manior de bellerive in nearby Buisson-de-caduin. Lovely room but awkward menu. we asked for a change to one of the courses on one of the tasting menus and then got into a fairly heated debate as to why they were going to charge full ALC price for a very minor substitution. Disgusted with their attitude we walked out. Michel Trama's got a staggering beautiful place in puymirol - but its a good 2 hour drive from sarlat. puymirol itself is a bit crappy but the food was seriously good. so, if you fancy a pilgrimage... cheers Tony
  13. Hmm, intersting thread. Here's my twopence... I loved these places. Pierre Gagnaire (my favourite) Michel Bras Arzak Akelare Ledoyen Fat Duck L'Ambroisie Le Meurice Michel Trama Guy Savoy and, sigh, Gordon Ramsay - admittedly it was was couple of weeks after he got his 3rd star but it was an electric & memorable experience el Bulli was superb - but I ate in the Seville "branch" so probably doesn't count here. But, if you can't get into Roses place I whole heartedly recommed Seville. Borderline 3 star L'Arpege (felt ripped off) Les Pres d’Eugine (just a dull meal, bt very god quality) Definitely not: ADNY Waterside Inn Le Cinq Jean-Georges Can Fabes Le Grand Vefour – terrible food but a great room Taillevent Berasategui – so bad, in fact, it shouldn’t even be listed as a restaurant If we’re going after two stars – the following are definitely not worthy: Auberge de I’lle Alain Chapel Duomo (Ragusa) Midsummer House, Cambridge Pied a Terre, London Patrick Guilhaud, Dublin Jacques Maxim Table d’Amis – possible the worst restaurant I’ve ever eaten in - even took the crown of Berasategui & that’s saying something
  14. L’Absinthe, Dinner, 5th April It’s had a few very good reviews: Independent and Times plus being within walking distance from home made it prime candidate for that elusive thing: cheap local restaurant that service really good food and wine at not rip you off prices. It has two levels – upstairs look fairly charming – downstairs – where we were put – was a little cramped. You didn’t so much sit at the table but huddle around it. It was a very, very small table. When the wine arrived the best (only?) place to keep it was on the floor. Bread was shockingly poor – I have no idea what they were thinking serving that up – slices of tepid bread fleetingly passed under a grill. I am sure it wasn’t but it came over as warmed stale bread. Simple classic menu was fine but nothing that really shouted out; no obvious temptresses. We went for onion soup and french bread with champignons. The soup look Ok was was lacking in depth and a bit too gloopy for my liking. The french bread & champignons was miserably small portion wise. It tasted Ok but the mushrooms were merely sliced button mushroom – no sign of anything wild. It was all gone in a couple of bites. Mains were the simple steak frites and lamb rump with mash. The medium-to-rare lamb came medium-to-fucked and the frites were pretty cold. Although they very apologetic & brought fresh hot frites. Dessert was the well regarded tarte tatin – we were genuinely looking forward to this. Oh god, what an awful bastardisation of a dish it was. Barely warm , apples soggy and completely lacking in anything slightly caramely. We complained saying that we thought it was bought in. No, we were assured, it was made earlier that day. We returned it after a mere one bite. I so wanted this place to be good... please someone else go and tell is was just a bad night
  15. chef of waldo's or the terrace? I ate at the terrace year or two ago & it really wasnt very nice at all
  16. when I had lunch at arpege many years ago they centre piece was white beetroot cooked in salt - the whole restaurant was made to stop and look no matter where you were in your meal. The beets were then removed and everyone was served some (a few slices with 50 yr old balsamic) - even if you were haivng pud. quite wonderful
  17. Here's a report of my visit to the cookery school (I started of as "bluewine" but forgot my password): click here. Anyway, although it was quite some time ago but I still fondly remember the experience & still use many of the techniques picked up that week. That was a present but I've never been quite able to save up the money to go back.
  18. Times are a changin' when egullet gets star billing in a Guardian article: click here Cheers Jay! btw - it would be great to see LeCS get its third star (the downside being I'll probably never be able to get a booking again...)
  19. Sorry - my post slightly cut down - I did say more And you are right to point out that I should have complained earlier but we got lost in conversation.
  20. Sarah - CHANGE YOUR FRIENDS!!!!!
  21. oh dear, oh dear – well, I suppose it serves me right for going back too soon. Three of us went for dinner last Friday night (the 25% off was a contributing factor) & had the surprise menu. And what a surprise it turned out to be. First up was the beetroot terrine which was genuinely lovely, inventive and interesting. Next was brill with braised chicory – what a disaster – the chicory completely overpowered the delicate brill. They both tasted OK on their own – but together, a bit yuk. Then came venison which was not so much rare but almost pulsing with a heartbeat – it also had a slightly musty under-taste which was not entirely pleasant. Fourth course was some of the runniest cheese I’ve ever seen with a bit of crusty skin on top – look a bit too much like a large bogey to really enjoy it. Last was banana ice cream with hot pain d’ecpice (sp?) foam. By the time they served us the ice cream had mostly melted. And, no PFs! Staggeringly disappointing & I fail to believe how they could even attempt to charge £49 each for that miserable lot. When leaving: MD: “did you enjoy your meal?”. Me: “not really – liked the beetroot but not much else”. MD: complete silence. Gave the distinct impression he didn’t give a shit.
  22. Superb lunch Slow roast monkfish cheeks with oxtail beignets and smoked potato mash. Very satisfying Slow roast pork belly with oriental spice infused broth – excellent pork belly However, the star was dessert : bayleaf panna cotta with red wine granita, pear sorbet and a few pistachios – an astonishingly well balanced set of flavours which you wouldn’t normally expect to work. The panna cotto had the most perfect & loving “give” – the gentlest pressure of the tongue caused it to collapse is a most satisfying way. I am not usually keen on dessert but this was just about the sexiest thing I have an and awful long time. A great and unstuffy complement to PaT.
  23. Oh dear… Starter was potato/cheese thing with pan fried mushrooms. I have no idea what the kitchen were thinking when they thought this up – it was a side dish, not a starter. A dollop of mash in a tiny “casserole” with few mushrooms that were completely dominated by the mash. You could have eaten in one go. And, at £6 they were taking the piss. Old spot and lentils – the pork was unfortunately flavourless and the accompanying sauce quite thin and miserable. I hope this was just an off day as I did love the place - good New York feel to it
  24. The only other good place - El Parador - is up for sale :-( click here
  25. Interesting meal last Saturday night Nibbles – selection of painfully thin & crispy “things” which included cod skin - rest were lovely but the cod skin was a bit of a miss. Good try, ‘though. Came with foam of wasabi and yogurt based dip. Interesting & very, very messy. First – celeriac concoction of foam & essence plus apple and hazelnut – a bit like a reworked waldorf salad – but much better. Just lovely. Jerusalem artichoke and mushroom “construction” served with infused tea of artichoke. Interested but lacking in depth – a bit one note for my liking but refreshing nonetheless. Pigeon with bacon popcorn, slice of corn on the cob & puree of corn (or was it parsnip?). Very good dish with bags of flavour. Next was cod but we asked to swap with the scallop dish on the fish tasting menu. They very kindly gave us a portion of the cod dish as well so we could taste it. I didn’t really like the cod but the scallops ware stunning – came with variety of cauliflower done several ways – foams (of , course!), thinly sliced & raw, puree and cous cous with very fine dice of the floret: delicious. (cauliflower & delicious are two words not often put together). Staggeringly good. Belly of pork with squid, cracking and interesting eastern influenced sauce. A fine dish. Desserts were a little less interesting – but I am not really dessert person. A major plus was the bread – Le Manior influence clearly in evidence here. A major minus – no petit fours – outrageous! Anyway – a very welcome addition to London scene but they will need to sort of the tables – too, too small for all the dishes that arrive. But warning – this quite an expensive restaurant and not as relaxing as it could be: tables are a little too packed together and I hate overhearing other people conservations – especially dull ones!
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