London - Eating & Drinking - Restaurants - French
I appear to be going through a French restaurant phase - I was taken to this one last night my my friend Harry, in London on business from the USA. He looked tired from his flight and I was keen to find somewhere close to his hotel; this Covent Garden restaurant looked good and fitted that criterion. We also chose it in honour of Harry’s absent francophile wife, a best friend since my early childhood.
Both of us loved the ambiance right from entry - this place is exquisitely decorated in authentic French fashion. The menu states this is London’s oldest French restaurant. General De Gaulle, no less, dined here during the war.
Tables are stacked very close to each other - I worried our conversation was disturbing our neighbours. We were chatting up a storm, so their conversation didn’t disturb us.
Service was awkward, in that typically Parisian way familiar to tourists. The staff were perfectly efficient, I just felt judged by them the whole time. There were communication issues. Harry, being American, wanted to add a tip and as service was included I prevented him - if looks could kill!
My steak tartare was good - finely chopped rather than minced; absolutely zero fat; well-flavoured and seasoned (just perhaps slightly too much pepper for my tastes). It didn’t come with the extra garnishes the menu seemed to promise but to be honest didn’t need them. The waiter thoughtfully offered me extra bread. The fries it came with were sublime - very fine cut, they hit that perfect fried potato sweet spot of being crisp and crunchy while also meltingly yielding. A side of creamed spinach was a perfect complement. We washed this down with an excellent Merlot from the house list.
I’d be happy to go again; the cheese board looked very tempting.
Check out my review of Mon Plaisir - I am hedgiecc - on Qype