Location: St. Paul's, London
Description: French restaurant chain run by Raymond Blanc - more of a mid-priced eaterie than his other restaurants (which include Le Manoir aux Quatre Saisons)
Reason for visit: Christmas lunch with work colleagues
My companions ate: One colleague had snails as her starter which I thought was very brave! Steak was a popular choice for main courses.
The food was: Excellent. My verdict on the steak tartar: really tasty, and it didn't actually feel that much like eating raw meat - more like very rare hamburger. It came with some sourdough bread, or if you have it as a main course it comes with fries. My main course was very nice but not that filling - the prawn potato was a small amount of crushed potatoes with a few pieces of prawn mixed in if I recall correctly. My colleagues all enjoyed their food immensely. The baked Alaska was nice but nothing special, with just vanilla ice cream inside the meringue, but it was done 'properly' i.e. doused with alcohol and set on fire as it reached our table, which was fun!
|Atlantic cod fillet|
The atmosphere/service was: Very good, our French waitress knew her way around the wine list and was able to make good recommendations.
Price range/value for money: Pretty expensive (but obviously a lot cheaper than Raymond Blanc's other restaurants) - the steak tartar was £9.90 as a starter and my fish main course was £17.40, which I thought was quite a lot for what it was. It was very nice though.
Would I recommend it? Yes - high quality French food at fairly steep prices for a chain, but a good restaurant none the less.