Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Social Eating House

Having read great things about Social Eating House, Art and I tried to get a Friday night reservation.  Our attempts proved futile, even 10 days or so in advance, despite, when showing up on the night early as advised, there was plenty of space left free for walk ins, which is surprising perhaps, given the good reviews.  Anyway, it was a good thing for us, we sat at the bar style seating on the ground floor.

I'd read that the service felt a little rushed to some, and at first, it certainly seemed like the interruptions were relentless, but they were so sweet, it's hard to view it as a negative thing.  We were asked about water, tap promptly arrived, then a minute later asked about drinks (we hadn't looked at the menu yet), then came the bread, things really get off to a quick start, but, having arrived at around 7:15, we were there for a good 3 hours and never felt like we were outstaying our welcome.

Once we'd gotten our acts together and managed shut up and look at the menu, we ordered 2 dill or no dill cocktails, their take on a cucumber martini.  I was torn between the mushroom and the duck starter so asked the waitress to suggest which to pick, she emphatically said duck (£10.50) and I was really happy when it arrived.  A boiled egg, with a breadcrumbed crust and runny yolk, with chips to use as soldiers and smoked duck ham.  It was incredible.

Art's wild boar bolognaise ravioli with kidney and hearts was also good by all accounts, it looked the part (£8.50).

My main of roasted cod with  kombu, mousse, cockles, baby gems and cream (£19.50) was also excellent.  The Cornish fish fillet was perfectly cooked, the rich sauce was well rounded and some nice veggies added texture.

The pork (£18) was perhaps the standout dish though, served with polenta, beets and spring onion, it was so succulent and full of flavour, I was kindly allowed to try and it was wow.  Definitely a dish to come back for.

For dessert, we'd spotted it at a neigbouring table and couldn't resist the lure of the chocolate eclair with salted caramel ice cream and praline mousse (£7.50).  It was a brilliant end to the meal, I'm a sucker for anything salted caramel flavoured and this was another well conceived dish, nice to have two completely different elements to it.

We also had a bottle of white priced at £35, I think the 2nd or 3rd cheapest available.  It's not a cheap dinner by any means but they are certainly banging out some solid cooking, which is notable given it's still early days for them.  I loved Pollen Street Social, this new venue from the same head chef, Paul Hood, is a more accessible and affordable offering.  I'll most definitely be back and I think they are a welcome addition to the Soho dining effort.  There's a prix fixe menu of 2 courses for £18 or 3 for £21 which, if my experience is anything to go by, is amazing value. 

Social Eating House
68 Poland St

The Social Eating House on Urbanspoon

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