Thursday, 13 March 2014

Gauthier Soho

Gauthier restaurant had been on my list for a long time prior to my visit last week.  Not sure what took me so long to get there.  Sold as 'modern French cooking with a twist of kitsch' I was intrigued.  What I find unappealing about the place is seeing the calories listed against each dish on the menu.  Is this really what diners want?  I don't.  I ignored it.

Anyway, we decided quickly to have 5 courses from the a la carte menu at £60.  Welcome cocktails, amaretto sour and negroni (£12.50 each) were excellent and the bread was amazing.  We were offered more bread so many times that we actually turned it down eventually.  These 2 are hazelnut and malted bread. 

Amuse bouches were served first, tuna tartare and cheese straws with aioli were the highlights.  First up on the menu proper are the premiere plat dishes.  I had the duck egg and soldiers, lurking beneath the top egg layer was a smoked eel sabayon and parsley jus.  Definitely kitsch presentation!  Really delicious.

My choice of deuxieme plat was the lobster, served in a shell shaped dish, in small pieces with mussels and a crustacean fricassee.

Troisieme plat was the Cornish cod with bass crisps, capers, bone marrow and sea urchin, this was seriously impressive, the bass crisps were incredible and the delicate fish was buttery soft, just lovely.

Of the whoppingly calorific choices for quatrieme plat I opted for the Welsh lamb.  Roasted loin and braised shoulder were served with herb and parmesan crusted celeriac.  Plenty of jus and a few sprigs of thyme added a wonderful aroma to the dish.  Another strong dish, my favourite on the night.

Next a little pre dessert of isle flottante.  This has to be my all time favourite pudding, so I'm always extremenly happy when it makes an appearance, particularly when it's an added extra!

We shared desserts, this was the Yorkshire rhubarb with lime mascarpone and lemon pepper.  This was interesting texturally and the fennel seed flecked crisps on top were great.  Ate some more flowers...

The other dessert we selected was the Golden Louis XV which I mistook for something else altogether, but it was great, hazelnut mousse, crunch praline and chocolate ganache topped with gold leaf, it's very decadent and rich, certainly needed something fruity to cut through it.  Very good though.

We drank a white rioja (I'd just flown back from Spain earlier in the day) and a couple of glasses of recommended dessert wines paired with the dishes we chose, I'm really into dessert wines at the moment.  Petit fours of madeleines, marshmallows and these other little sioux pastry creamy things were all fantastic.

Service was sweet, the room was intimate, ideal for a date and the place has plenty of nooks and crannies to explore, it's a townhouse so the restaurant spans 3 floors.  I'm glad to have been, not sure I'll rush back, but the savoury courses in particular really do shine.  Should probably have had the truffle risotto in hindsight, but I'm trying not to eat rice as a starter, things got silly a couple of months ago.

Gauthier Soho
21 Romilly St

Gauthier Soho on Urbanspoon

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