This Little Piggy went to Sauterelle - Bank - London
A mid week jaunt to an intimate restaurant for a long overdue catch up with a piglet was the premise for the visit to Restaurant Sauterelle housed in one of the grandest buildings in the city. Another attraction was their excellent value set menu of 2 courses for £20 or 3 courses for £23 and a minor one was that it’s quite close to my office.
You arrive at the exterior of the Royal Exchange and pick a door (any door) as they all lead you into the central vestibule where the champagne and seafood bar lives. This Little Piggy has sampled the cocktails here on a few occasions but tonight we made our way to one of the four corners and went up to the mezzanine level where the restaurant is. French Basil (homage to Mr Fawlty) met us at the top and immediately tried to herd us into the loud bar without asking our name etc. He explained that he didn’t think we’d come to eat as there was no one else in the restaurant yet (?) and so the comical interactions with French Basil started. We were seated at the perfect people watching table in one of the mezzanine balconies and settled in.
We were handed the a la carte menu and nothing else so i enquired about the set menu and also a drinks menu. French Basil was certain there was no set menu but after checking, lo and behold, it materialised along with a wine list. A slate of butter and salt then followed. We were then immediately presented with an amuse bouche of ‘Cauliflower Veloute with Raisins, Curry Oil & Green Puree’. The first few spoonfuls were delicious and packed of flavour but maybe i should have stirred it as towards the bottom the flavours faded and it ended up more like a dessert of creamy raisins but it was nice to kick off with.
Our orders were then taken (which i feel should have been before the amuse bouche but I didn’t want to mention this to French Basil).
Our little butter and salt were finally given some bread to go with them and then our starters arrived. Being January
i tried to go for the healthiest option of ‘Herring with English Puree, Potato & Cucumber Salad, Pickled Shallot’ which was nice, fresh and light. The English Puree im guessing consisted of spinach or rocket as it had a nice peppery taste which did go well with the fish although i’m a lover of fish and horseradish so would have preferred that kind of kick instead.
Keeping on the healthy fish theme my next course was the ‘Cornish Cod with Baby Artichoke, Ratatouille, Cauliflower Puree and Curry Oil.’ The cod fillet was so fleshy, juicy and filling it was a struggle to finish but I powered on and accompanied each mouthful with alternations of the rich ratatouille and the cauliflower. The vegetables in the ratatouille were diced nice and small so I could fill a fork with the cod and every vegetable enveloped in the tomato sauce.
Even though I was pretty full I was intrigued by the dessert of ‘Set Vanilla Cream with Comice Pear, Mulled Wine Jelly, Flaked Almonds & Lemon Thyme Ice Cream’ so went for that.
The ice cream was perched on top and although was nice and lemony, there was hardly any hint of thyme and it wasn’t very cold so I think maybe had been out of the freezer too long. The next layer of mulled wine jelly was more like fruit compote in red wine but packed a punchy Christmassy flavour although not sure all the alcohol had been burned off enough as wouldn’t have wanted to drive after eating it. The vanilla cream (or pannacotta) was a welcome accompaniment as it neutralised the strong red wine flavours.
A really lovely venue, lovely menu and lovely French hapless waiter.
This Little Piggy Approves
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