• Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create an account.

Matthew Grant

Hedone

102 posts in this topic

Check out @hermanoprimero on twitter for pics of most of the dishes mentioned......


you don't win friends with salad

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well someone certainly 'gets' Hedone.

AA Gill 5* Food 5 * Atmosphere

'i'm wary of absolutes, and leagues and top tables of best, better and bestest,, but if you ask me, and i suppose you are, to recommend just one gobstopping, heart racing dinner in all of london, it would be hedone.

Wow.

That bang? the reservations system imploding!

Well done all at hedone.


you don't win friends with salad

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I find Gill gets it right consistently , he did with Pollen street and has done with Hedone.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Had an awesome lunch here today, sitting 15 feet from Alain Ducasse and his head chef, both of whom were mopping up the sauces with bits of bread and generally scraping the enamel off the plates.

Mikael's constant new dishes make this place very special - today I had the new oyster with watercress gelee - Mikael sous-vides the oyster - which I thought would've been a crime, but apparently not - which gives it the texture of a barely-set custard. With the gelee and watercress, absolutely marvellous. Also new, the excellent crab with cauliflower. The jammy dodger to start with (I think he should do a selection, with Oreos - squid ink sablees filled a mornay cream, anyone?)

ETA: forgot to mention the great carpaccio of marbled, sika deer, served with mushrooms and bone marrow (I believe). Perfect.

I had some very mimor quibbles with the bread when he first opened - probably more minor than the quibbles He had - but it has reached a three-course meal level. Half a loaf of bread and a large hunk of that butter and leave me alone, I'm entirely content.

For a main, the pigeon. The leg was fantastic, moist and fattier than usual, the breast pornographically pink, sitting on the pistachio salsa verde with the offal sauce. I've had this five or six times and this was the best.

For dessert, Chloe the pattissier made her carrot dish which was completely marvelous - a shell filled with a carrot mousse, what I took to be an orange and carrot sorbet, sitting on some grated carrot. Sounds dreadful, but everything was in balance and it made for fantastic eating.

I'm lucky this place is so near, and with the correct application of compromising photographs, I can just slip into the bar without causing too much of a fuss.


Edited by MobyP (log)

"Gimme a pig's foot, and a bottle of beer..." Bessie Smith

Flickr Food

"111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321" Bruce Frigard 'Winesonoma' - RIP

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Fantastic meal on Saturday night, we had the 7 course tasting menu with 4 substitutions to avoid eating dishes I had already tried A lovely piece of Lovely Cod with Jerusalem artichoke, the crab with cauliflower and lemon grass cream is excellent though a touch cold. If I have one criticism, and it's one that Mikael acknowledges but its the way he likes to serve it, its that the steamed fish dished could do with a touch of salt. The onion is still delightfully simple. The Seabass was not quite at its usual level but this is still a level above anywhere else in London.

The next couple of courses really did hit another level completely. The Sika Deer Royale was wonderful and surprisingly traditional in style. The foie gras was really good quality, the fatty richness complemented by the incredible sauce. Slight acidity from a touch of vinegar was relatively easy to determine but the texture and richness of it left us to think that it had been thickened with blood or the offal. I was amazed to find out that it was nothing more than the gelatine from the bones, the sauce took 3 days to make which might give you some idea what I was referring to when I said some of the dishes appear to be simple but are a bit more involved than you might realise. As we have come to expect the deer itself was one of the better pieces of venison I have tried.

The Shetland lamb we had wasn't yet on the menu (I think it will be on from Tuesday and should be a regular addition to the menu) and drew some admiring glance from the table next to us. It was incredible, surprisingly slim bones indicating a small animal, lovely crisp fat and the lamb served rare which at first sight I thought was a little underdone but one bite left me realising that anything more would have been a mistake. Quite a dark colour with a hint of iodine, served with root vegetables and another fantastic sauce.

The lemon tart with mandarin sorbet was a great way to finish a fine meal. Chloe is star in that kitchen, plenty of plaudits for the ingredients but the technical work in the pastry section is amongst the best I've tried in London.

I feel like there has been a slight shift in style since the first few weeks, some of the dishes seem a little more complex without compromising the ingredient quality and still keeping the focus on the key ingredient in each dish. I would say that this meal was solid two star territory with a couple of positive exceptions; I'll put my neck on the line and say that the deer and the lamb could easily have been from a 3 star meal in France. Outstanding :wub:


"Why would we want Children? What do they know about food?"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hilariously bad meal here tonight. £300

And the best thing was the amuse bouche...

7pm sharp arrived to two other tables occupied. Amuse was a

cheeze sable with red pepper Jamie dodger. Great cheese taste, a good start

Took the fiver course with matching wines. First course was crab with cauliflower jelly. Actively offensive, not least due to the bit of shell I found in the crab. Fridge cold and lacking seasoning.

Second starter was scallop with carrot emulsion; the scallops weren't seared properly and the carrot purée (with multicoloured carrots inside) weren't seasoned - yes, it was "sweet" but one dimensional.

Onion and pear was interesting. The pear was superb but the onion was boring and one dimensional - again, just sweet. The butter sauce was simple to the point of being boring. Special shout out to the bread and butter which appeared under cooked - with the texture of a

Crumpet - it hadn't been rested enough before being cut. The butter was unexceptional compared to that served in Alain Ducasse the day before.

Main was silks deer - sauce was great but the meat had a great big piece of un trimmed silver skin hanging off it - no attempt to trim the meat. The potatoes were grainy - had they been passed through a tammis? They were on the verge of splitting also.

Chocolate desert was good overall.

Food was generally poor and the service was laughable - 6 course in less than 1 hr 20 mins, drinks missing, wrong coats, rude staff. Very poor indeed - and the ingredients didn't taste any better than those served in hundreds of restaurants over th country - only the beef genuinely tasted unique.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Finally managed to have dinner here last week, infiltrated a pals table. Like the room in the same way I like L'Astrance, minimal, stylish & comfortable. Food was very, very good, I would go as far as saying that it's 2* quality. I've read many posts on here and found that IMHO, that those who understand the simplicity and almost perfection that can be found at L'Arpege, L'Ambroisie and indeed L'Astrance will get this place immediately. It's very mature French cooking at it's best, yes there were quibbles, seasoning could have been a tad better, but that's a personal thing. The wine list could have been a bit more friendly towards my wallet, the sommelier will run away into big Burgundy's if allowed. Aurelie was fantastic and is a fabulous Maitre d', but she needs to be given the floor. These are minor matters that in time will resolve themselves. This has to be the most exciting new opening in recent times, one of the few places that I'll return.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Matthew asked earlier what chefs are going to the lengths Mikael is when it comes to sourcing, and the simple answer is hundreds. Pretty much every Michelin starred restaurant strives to find the best ingredients available to them, both in terms of locality and budget. Heck, there's a host of non-Michelin accredited gastro-pubs in the south Notts area where I live who apply this same dedication.

I don't spend much time here these days, read virtually any. but a search on hedone brought this up.

one of the more wrong headed statements I have ever had the bemusement to observe. the turbot alone is on a level far exceeding any restaurant in this country. Far...

anyhoo, carry on :)


A meal without wine is... well, erm, what is that like?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Matthew asked earlier what chefs are going to the lengths Mikael is when it comes to sourcing, and the simple answer is hundreds. Pretty much every Michelin starred restaurant strives to find the best ingredients available to them, both in terms of locality and budget. Heck, there's a host of non-Michelin accredited gastro-pubs in the south Notts area where I live who apply this same dedication.

I don't spend much time here these days, read virtually any. but a search on hedone brought this up.

one of the more wrong headed statements I have ever had the bemusement to observe. the turbot alone is on a level far exceeding any restaurant in this country. Far...

anyhoo, carry on :)

Yes. There is a difference to scouring local farms or butchers/suppliers in your area to what they do at Hedone.

Mikeal moved country once to find better fish. I know a lot of chefs and foodies, I don't know anyone who takes it to the same degree as Mikeal, Stephen Harris at The Sportsman probably the only other in the same boat, and he convinced Mikael there was some decent produce to be had in the UK.


you don't win friends with salad

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Scott - I did add the words 'locality and budget' in that statement and I have acknowledged their sourcing is incredible in an earlier post. I think you need to consder the point in context.

But! Hedone ain't cheap and has to be judged in those terms. I'd like to see anyone pull this concept off in a town or city beyond London. I doubt the pricing would fly so (with one or two notable exceptions) regional chefs simply don't have the option to go to these lengths.

And is the quality of the turbot really better than The Ledbury, or (since he keeps coming up in the thread), Ducasse, to name just two? Those are restaurants who, albeit with different styles, manage to produce dishes where there's a lot more technique going on around the main ingredient. Admittedly, they have much larger kitchen brigades, but that's part of my point - it's there to be seen on the plate.

All that being said I have to admit, it's nearly a year since I've been to Hedone and should really give it a second chance.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I don't know, I feel there is a double 'conceptual' mistake at the heart of all this.

First, the belief, in my view a little immature, that there is a single 'best' produce in each category: 'the best scallops', 'the best turbot', etc. There are many ways to be great for a piece of seafood or meat, and it is preposterous to believe to have identified the unique best. I come from a country where cuisine is strongly ingredient-based, and where many people, people like us I mean, are obsessed by quality of produce, and I honestly believe that I have eaten stuff to which nothing can be declared superior (just caugtht Mediterranean fish that brings tear to your eyes so good it is, rare breeds of pork or lamb or cows you've never heard of, unbelievable vegetables, bread and pasta from superselected flours, etc.), yet I wouldn't for one moment say I have eaten the unique best. Another farmer in the next valley may be raising equally, yet differently, flavoursome lambs; another restaurant may know a different fisherman who procures equally marvelous seabass. In the two times I was at Hedone I found the produce truly excellent, but hand on heart I could not say that the scallops or the pork or the turbot I had there were uniquely the best: I've had equally marvellous scallops, pork or turbot in Italy, France, Spain and yes, even the UK - here in Scotland in particular, and, I should notice, without all the strained obsession and fanfare and worshipping choruses that seems to accompany Jonsson's searches. (To be fair, I'll make an exception for the pigeon). The fact that Jonsson is deeply obsessed does not mean that he will in the end find a pork that is definitely superior to that served by every single other chef in the UK: does there exist a uniquely best farmer that raises pigs, cows, lambs just for Jonsson, or a special fisherman who knows a special race of turbot caught in a special spot of water nobody else knows just for Jonsson? Come on. Rest assured that Ducasse and his suppliers, and others, will find equally good turbots.

The second point I would make is this. Even assuming Jonsson's produce had a slight edge on everybody else's, we are really talking nuances here, subtle nuances that can be undone by many other factors. Notably, cooking. Now, Jonsson's feat of opening a restaurant at this level given his background is nothing short of amazing and I admire him enormously for this - but the fact remains that being a top chef, in particular a 2* level chef as many say, is setting the bar very high, a bar that in my visits he was very, very, very far from passing, and thus a bar that is set ridiculously high for what Hedone is. This is my opinion of course, but while the cooking was good, there was some coarseness and some inconsistency of execution that makes it almost offensive for other very hard working professionals, who've perhaps sacrificed their youth undergoing terribly tough and long and disciplined training, to be compared to what can olny be described as a (very) talented amateur. Yes Andy Hayler and Matthew, we have understood that at Hedone we find scallops that are still wriggling so fresh they are, and that therefore they are very sweet: yet a great dish of scallops is not the winner in a competition for the sweetest scallops in the world. It is the winner in a competition for the best and most originally prepared scallops in the world. And in this competition the Hedone dish did not even make it to the podium.


Edited by Man (log)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting. I still am not sure I agree with his theory of searching for 'freak' animals, but he's dead right on the utter irrelevance of bloggers. :smile:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well that is interesting to hear from a restaurant the impact bloggers have on business compared to that of professional reviewers. I imagine this is the experience of many restaurants.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

but he's dead right on the utter irrelevance of bloggers. :smile:

Makes sense. In comparision with how many folk might read a review in a national newspaper, the number visiting most blogs must be tiny. But, I assume, most bloggers would not regard themselves as being in the same "business" as newspaper reviewers - for one it is a profession, for the other a hobby. I have no interest in starting a blog (although I gather it can get you freebie invites to places) and am content with posting my notes about meals we've had on egullet, Chowhound, local sites as the mood takes me, as well as sending them off to the Good Food Guide (which I've been doing for some time before I discovered internet discussion boards).


John Hartley

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Scott - I did add the words 'locality and budget' in that statement and I have acknowledged their sourcing is incredible in an earlier post. I think you need to consder the point in context.

But! Hedone ain't cheap and has to be judged in those terms. I'd like to see anyone pull this concept off in a town or city beyond London. I doubt the pricing would fly so (with one or two notable exceptions) regional chefs simply don't have the option to go to these lengths.

OK, I don't think you were taken out of context at all. the words and implication are clear.

I also think Hedone *IS* cheap. it is incredibly great value for the level of ingredient provided. Go for lunch if you like, the tasting is still available and is incredible value.

And is the quality of the turbot really better than The Ledbury, or (since he keeps coming up in the thread), Ducasse, to name just two? Those are restaurants who, albeit with different styles, manage to produce dishes where there's a lot more technique going on around the main ingredient. Admittedly, they have much larger kitchen brigades, but that's part of my point - it's there to be seen on the plate.

Actually yes. that is the whole point, it is not just better, it is markedly and observably better. if I have one tiny criticism, is that sometimes Mikael serves his turbot too fresh, but hey, that's not the worst crime. and it is the teensiest of criticisms at that.

if you want to know the difference between good, great, and passable turbot I would recommend passing on a couple of meals out, flying to Biarritz, hoping in a car for 35-40 minutes until you arrive in Gataria. stump up about 10eur for a bottle of the local txacolina, and order the turbot at Elkano.

if you are feeling a bit extravagant, you could do worse that back to back meals at Mugaritz (all technique, passable ingredients), and Extebarri (cathedral to ingredient quality). between these 2 you have the finest technique, and the finest ingredients, and the borders of what each is capable of are illustrated beautifully.

NB. I am aware of just what a load of pretentious toss that sounds :D but its still true. honest, guv.

if you don't get ingredients, extebarri will fix that for you. Elkano is a masterclass in turbot. really. Go for the earliest table at lunch, when they have time to guide you through eating the damned thing. the 7 or 8 zones within the fish, the differences in flavours and textures between the flesh from the cheek, from the chest cavity, between the ribs, and dark vs sun side up.

I think there is a mistake commonly made that there isn't a difference ingredient quality between one decent restaurant and another, but its just not the case. if you eat a tomato (or basic rendition thereof) at Louis XV in Monaco, 'L'arpege in Paris, and Mikael's sublime gazpacho (using finest sardinian tomatoes, home ripen, and macerated in their juices) and then take a look at something else in London you will be shocked at the difference.

The vegetables on the riviera markets are still head and shoulders above what is farmed here. Now if someone goes to the effort of getting their hands on that, they are 1. taking sourcing to further lengths 2. providing a clearly higher quality product.

I once had a really interesting conversation with Theo Randall about sourcing, when he opened his new place (good food, shame about the room). He was telling me that it took him 6 months before opening to get his sourcing in line, visiting people all over italy, and the UK, and how there wasn't a magic directory where people can just buy what they want. sourcing is an art, and it is very, very hard work.

When I spoke to victor at Extebarri, I asked how his Spiny Langouste (god's own lobster) was so good, and so much better than what was served by the 3* restaurants around him, when the baseline quality all round was so good? his answer? with a smile "we try harder". before they settled on their milk supplier, they tried samples and visited over 60 dairies. people just don't do that, not unless you are a produce focused pyschopath :D

All that being said I have to admit, it's nearly a year since I've been to Hedone and should really give it a second chance.

you really should.

** also some of that pretentious, rambling nonsense was also in relation to Man's post below.


A meal without wine is... well, erm, what is that like?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well that is interesting to hear from a restaurant the impact bloggers have on business compared to that of professional reviewers. I imagine this is the experience of many restaurants.

I think he's right, but I wonder how much of that is do with the surfeit of crap bloggers out there?

which I don't mean to be harsh, but what I do mean is that plainly some are more prolifigate than they are knowledgable. Just because you have the time, and interest, you write something up without any real basis for your conclusions. it is a lot like the "every man" school of film criticism which basically says that someone is not reviewing as expert, or with any knowledge, they are just an every day joe. problem is, there is no such thing.

I think in many ways, and it is a personal opinion only (and there are squillions of people more knowledgable than me), that the decline in internet forums is a bad thing for the quality of criticism. I mean this in the way that someone would post and write about their experiences somewhere, and they would hone and sharpen their skills in the cross fire. Without this refining and guiding process, what we have a disintermediated forum in the sense that every poster now has an untested blog. they write these blogs, cross promoting each others, in some sycophantic love in.

at the heart of it, many of these people do not know very much. and in turn, I think people might read them as a form of food porn, but do they take them seriously when it comes to allocating their entertainment spend? I am not so sure.

but then keep in mind, these are my views and they are worth about as much as you paid for them :D


A meal without wine is... well, erm, what is that like?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

but he's dead right on the utter irrelevance of bloggers. :smile:

Makes sense. In comparision with how many folk might read a review in a national newspaper, the number visiting most blogs must be tiny. But, I assume, most bloggers would not regard themselves as being in the same "business" as newspaper reviewers - for one it is a profession, for the other a hobby. I have no interest in starting a blog (although I gather it can get you freebie invites to places) and am content with posting my notes about meals we've had on egullet, Chowhound, local sites as the mood takes me, as well as sending them off to the Good Food Guide (which I've been doing for some time before I discovered internet discussion boards).

I promise you, that many of these bloggers ABSOLUTELY think they are on a par with newspaper reviewers.

you only need to see the genetic rejects trolling the saturday guardian reviews, to see how highly some people rate their views vis a vis a nationally published reviewer.

and as for freebies, the early contestants on Big Brother have nothing on some new breed bloggers were it comes to expecting freebies.

** full disclosure, there are some excellent blogs out there, run by credible and knowledgable people but equally they can be drowned out by the noise and multitude of the masses of other blogs.


A meal without wine is... well, erm, what is that like?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

God I sound like I hate bloggers with an enormous chip on my shoulder about it. I don't hate them at all, although I am suspicious of the way the medium and form is used. I think Jon Tseng's outstanding revelations about Dabbous, Raymond Blanc and Jori White are worth 75 random student food blogs :D.


Edited by Scott (log)

A meal without wine is... well, erm, what is that like?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I too wonder what goes on Scott. Take for instance 'Good Food Guide restaurant of the Year' The Plough at Longparish which opened earlier this year ,the chef here names Maze in his pedigree. We went to try the a la cart menu. We had a starter and main course each, we then left without risking a dessert. Three of the dishes were poorly presented, average uninspired cooking, one was disgusting. The only dishes coming out of the kitchen that looked good were fish & chips.

The next day we went to Bluebells at Sunningdale (not in any guides that I know of) the three course lunch was great, they have an excellent chef, though not well known, the owner/maitre'd and staff are friendly and efficient. The bill, including coffee, a dessert and home made bread (none was even offered at The Plough) was only £10 more.

I would be interested if anyone else has been to The Plough.


Sid the Pig

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Much as I'm a fan of the Good Food Guide (and usually send it the contributions I also post here), you do sometimes wonder what on earth they've been up to.

For example, the 2012 issue credits The Manchester Midland Hotel French restaurant with a 2 - only the same score as a decentish pub down the road in Cheshire and the same as the cafe at a nearby art gallery. 'Tis a nonsense.

I was also gobsmacked to read that the North West restaurant of the year was Grenache at Worsley which was only average food and less than average service. Frankly piss poor in comparison with many other places at which we've eaten in the region. No doubt, they actively touted customers to fill in the nomination forms - just as we witnessed happening at Nutters in Rochdale a couple of years back.


Edited by Harters (log)

John Hartley

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lunched at Hedone on Saturday.

We ate the tasting menu and sat at the counter.

I like counter seating and enjoyed the food.

We ate from the tasting menu at £55 at lunch. The other options ranged from a no choice three course lunch for £23, alc £35 - £45 for three or four courses.

We got

Crab and Grapefruit amuse

Cevennes Onions with Pear Shavings

Wild Dorset Turbot with Potato Skin Emulsion and Beef Juices

Cuttlefish Tagliatelli with its Ragu

Hare a la Royale, mushroom ravioli

hedone hare.jpg

Roasted Breast and Leg of Squab, Cepes and Rowan Berries

Lemon Variations

hedone lemon.jpg

Chocolate Bar

hedone chocolate.jpg

We drank by the glass some rose Champagne, Riesling and Beaune. I suppose the booze was a little pricey but the not bad value for the quality. The sourdough wasn’t bad either!

I enjoyed this all. The pear and onion was a little bit dull, perhaps, although the lemony butter sauce was very good. The squab was excellent as was the hare (caramelised leg meat was so good) although the rowan berries were quite stunningly tart.

I also liked the beef juices with the turbot. The fish was nicely golden and the beef juices were great. The fish was a little bit little but not too tiny. I love turbot and would happily eat it by the lb. I was a little less keen on the cuttlefish although I ate the lot.

Chocolate bar was good and much more interesting than it was on my first visit. Lemon variations was nice too.

Phone pics are a bit dull - sorry - but you get the idea.


Martin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Excellent choice of venue and day, Martin ;)

By coincidence I was there on Saturday as well - first visit, v impressed. I can't believe I've not been before given it's pretty local to me.

Slip sole is a must, fantastic. Really enjoyed the apple meille feuille as well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A mini northern rampage down south last Saturday to Hedone with my local pub chef/patron mate to meet some old ‘foodie friends from the internet’ as my wife likes to call them. The internet as a means to meet like minded people of whatever persuasion being an unusual pastime in the North. Witchcraft and cousin/ferret marrying, fine , meeting people ‘from the internet’ still raises eyebrows.

It’s been a year since I worked in London and Kings Cross was a twice weekly trip, what’s happened to it? It’s so transformed I couldn’t get my bearings and so distracted by the changes to the point where I appeared to forget how the tube worked and was very confused as to why I couldn’t find the District line! Just as i thought i'd mastered it, I decided to dispense with changing tube at Hammersmith, an excellent idea until we whizzed past chiswick park and ended up taking the district line back from Acton.

Eventually we found ourselves at Chiswick Park and after a long morning of travel thought we’d earned a pint of Chiswick’s finest, despite my local being probably the northernmost Fullers draft ale stocking outpost, a pint near its spiritual/actual home is always worth looking forward to. We were more than slightly crestfallen to discover that a) our favourite fullers pub conveniently located to hedone was closed undergoing refurbishment and b) the new meeting place was a particularly grim Irish bar opposite Hedone offering a miserly selection that saw me having a Fosters for old time’s sake and heading across the road for lunch, leaving any pub early is not my usual modus operandi.

Once ensconced in Hedone some Champagne was called for, I’m not sure I managed to see a wine list all day but it kept appearing so if it aint broke don’t fix it. My internet friend had kindly brought along some 89 La Rioja Alta 904 and IIRC a Gevrey Chambertin, but both were decanted so actual detail I’ve lost, we also drank a fair amount of the 2009 white Marsannay from the list which was most excellent.

A crab amuse kicked things off at the bar/kitchen area, this is certainly a busy area now and not just a finishing /plating up area a la Robuchon, the majority of the cooking is done here and there are noticeably more staff here than on previous visits.

We had- little crab amuse on a delicate pastry case, poached oyster (instead of umami flan) , Egg Florentine, turbot and potato emulsion, squid and cuttlefish ragu, Hare a la Royale, squab pigeon with foie ‘sauce’, cheese, chocolate dessert, mille-feuille and another dish pineapple? A work in progress.

I’ve got iPhone photos but they’re a) more an aide memoir for me, b) I don’t know how to get them on here anyway, and c) they’re not very good.

But just to give a few highlights, the egg in Florentine was perfectly slow cooked and this was a variation on a theme my internet friends had previously had, the turbot displayed perfectly the ‘mother of pearl’ sheen that shows the quality of the fish, and a delicate crust from butter and pan, not bag.

The potato emulsion was well, buttery and potatoey – to get all adjectivised verbs on your asses. (The things you learn from the guardian restaurant reviews reader comments eh?) . The cuttlefish another unique dish (and nice not to see another copy of squid risotto!) and even a minor power cut couldn’t dim the excitement, though it made for an even poorer photo.

Then the hare, a stunningly cooked piece of loin, a filled ravioli, the sauce.... I won’t spoil it, it’s a killer dish. 2* comfort food.

The Squab I tried even though I have a mixed time with Pigeons nowadays ever since an early sous vide experience at the Fat Duck,I liked it but couldn’t manage the full breast, though there were plenty of willing takers on the table.

The desserts were all good, but all kneel before the king, the millefeuille. There’s a few trade secrets in there some of which Mikeal disclosed but others remain secrets, suffice to say it lives up to its billing and although I couldn’t quite count a thousand layers they were all distinct and it even holds its shape once cut straight down. And let’s not forget the bread, oh the bread.

So all told a restaurant that is quietly but noticeably ramping up the scale of its ambition since my earlier visits, where it goes from here is anyone’s guess. It’s solid one star of course but the hare, the Millefeuille and the Cevennes pear dish* would all easily grace a 2* menu, so that is certainly an achievable ambition.

*My friend hadn’t tried it so an additional course for him was kindly prepped by Mikeal.

To finish after coffee we had a quiet beer at the bar whilst the staff had their tea, c.6 hours had elapsed by this point, so we thought it time to move on, we did find a few pints of Fullers and a random wander to Bubbledogs to meet a friend at the chefs table, but soon Kings Cross beckoned, and it would be rude not to round off the day with a counterbalance to an afternoon of some of the world’s finest ingredients and wine with a nice Big Mac for the train home. You can take the boy out of York etc….


Edited by Gary Marshall (log)

you don't win friends with salad

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.