I met up with my step-father today, we both thought La Gavroche seemed like a good place for lunch so that is where we met up. It was a good move.
The lunch menu was a good buy at £46.50 for three courses including wine and water. The staff were perfectly happy to assist in translating the dishes that were named beyond schoolboy-French ability and we both ended up ordering the same stuff. It sounded good so why not?
There was an amuse-bouche offering of deep-fried tiger prawn with avocado vinaigrette that was quite delicious; a good sharpener to get us both in the mood for the more serious stuff to follow. The prawn was very flavourful as was the avocado vinaigrette, I am pretty sure the vinegar used was balsamic.
We then had a lobster and button mushrooms in a pastry case with a very tasty mushroom-infused cream sauce. There was plenty of lobster and the flavours of lobster and mushroom were perfectly complimentary. I am sure the mushroom sauce used something a bit grander than button mushrooms to obtain its rich flavour. It was terribly good.
The main course was supreme of pheasant with choucrote, carrots, potatoes and slices of sausage. The sausage was quite brilliant, as were the potatoes and carrots in the rich sauce. They didn’t over-do the quantity of choucrote, it was all nicely balanced. Perhaps the pheasant was a bit tough, but when isn’t pheasant a bit tough?
After scoping the cheese trolley we were tempted to go for cheese, until one of the desserts was translated as chestnut tart, something neither of us could resist. We chose well, for it was delicious.
OK, the wine on offer with the set menu was nothing to write home about (we chose Leon Beyer Pinot Blanc, yawn-a-rama or what?) but the food was terribly good and the atmosphere was most compelling. It was nice to go to an establishment where they knew how to fold napkins when one had to leave the table. I don’t think one could find a better lunch served in more pleasing circumstances than this. I admit meals are often made by the company, and my company was terribly good, but I don’t think you could go far wrong dining at La Gavroche for lunch, a top address.
Contact: La Gavroche, 43 Upper Brook Street, W1K 7QR. 020 7499 1826.