A steal at L'autre Pied
If you have not yet eaten at L'autre Pied in London to try their Michelin starred meal, then you must get in there before November 20th (2013), while they are still serving their £35 five course dinner.
The best part is that the menu does not end at just five courses. In fact, we started with a stunning chicken liver canapé. It was so silky and smooth and contrasted perfectly with the crispy poppyseed pastry.
The service here is impeccable. The waiter brings ice water (which is practically unheard of in London) and breads non-stop, which allowed me to try most of them. These are fresh out of the oven and as soft as pillows. Plus, serving them on what seemed to be a tree trunk combined our contemporary meal with a rustic feel.
Then, to our surprise, the actual meal STILL did not begin as we were served an amuse bouche of artichoke done three ways on top of a little lemon confit. Everything was going smoothly until we took a bite of the lemon hidden at the very bottom. It was so bitter that it overpowered all the other flavors in my mouth!
What I loved about L'autre Pied isn't necessarily the flavors (which mostly meshed nicely) but rather the textures. They really get the combinations of creamy, crunchy, crispy, chewy, etc. to work together.
After all these vegetables, I was ready for some meat. We were first served the grilled mackerel and tartare. Oh. My. Gosh. The combination of the mackerel done two ways is the essence of contrasting textures and flavors, especially with the slight Asian touch from the miso.
The poached pollock worked well with the vegetables, but this wasn't an extremely memorable dish, unfortunately...
But the roe deer certainly was! With a slight gamey flavor and decorated with ingredients that resulted from molecular gastronomy, this is the meat lover's paradise. Except the deer was a bit overcooked and dry... At least the flavors were spot on.
We were then presented with what they call a "pre-dessert". It was a refreshing little palate cleanser that I wish was sold in pint-sized containers.
Finally, stuffed and ready to enter into a food coma, our waiter brought a beautifully plated, deconstructed panna cotta. From above, it kind of looked like a bonsai tree =) As for flavor, it seemed like the chef knew what you would crave at this point: a light, fruity dessert to close the meal with.
- If you want to get in on this £35 deal, you better get going on the reservations asap (you make the reservation on their website for this deal ONLY).
- Ask specifically for tap water if you don't care (they charge for all other water). It's safe to drink it in London, and this goes for all restaurants.
- The wine pairings they offer really do complement the dishes. I couldn't drink THAT much, but you are welcome to order just one or two glasses to pair with a couple dishes.
- The closest Tube stop is Bond Street, although Baker Street works too.