Portland, London, England, UKBack to Forum
Our lunch experiences, July 2017
Having a Michelin Guide of major European cities at home we had studied it and found Portland, which we thought would be a perfect and modern fit during our recent visit to London in July/August 2017. My fiancé and I reserved a table for Monday lunch in July 2017.
The restaurant opened in January 2015 and feels beautiful and inviting while offering modern British cuisine. The head chef is Merlin Labron-Johnson, who was only 24 then and had 9 months later earned a Michelin star.
As the name implies the restaurant is located on Great Portland Street with an unassuming shop front. We nearly overlooked it by ourselves. There were no obvious signs this is a Michelin stared restaurant, so by simply walking in front of the restaurant by chance one wouldn’t necessarily know.
The dining room was bright and understated with an open kitchen.
The lunch service wasn’t very busy. Our fellow diners were couples from thirty onwards.
We were warmly welcomed by James, the Maître d’. He was warm and friendly and had a lovely English accent – like Hugh Grant in “Four Weddings and a Funeral”.
Having provided our dietary requirements during the booking process the staff was already aware of them. James told us we could pursue the whole menu, since none of the items we are allergic to had been used.
The lunch menu is a real steal in our opinion. 2 courses are priced at 34 GBP (ca. 38.40 Euro / ca. 43.90 USD) or 3 courses are 39 GBP (ca. 44.05 Euro / ca. 50.30 USD). It includes still or sparkling water, freshly baked sourdough bread, hand churned butter, coffee and petit fours.
We started off with a summer cocktail, the Japanese Garden with Monkey 47 Gin, Midori infused with Shiso, Yuzu and lime, which we loved.
The greeting from the kitchen [Amuse-bouche] – carrot and ricotta – arrived soon afterwards with the bottle of still water, the sourdough bread and the hand churned butter.
The carrot was sweet and crunchy. It went well with the saltiness and softness of the cheese.
The bread and especially combined with the butter were excellent.
Studying the menu we wanted to try the snacks. We were advised they aren’t suitable for sharing, so we had each our own portion.
It was very well worth it to pay 6 GBP (ca. 6.80 Euro / ca. 7.80 USD) per person.
It was a trio of crispy chicken skins, liver parfait, candied walnuts and Muscat grapes, smoked cod’s roe tartlet with young peas and Parmesan biscuit, grilled corn, gooseberries and black garlic jam.
They were delightful.
It was amazing how intense the flavors were.
Our absolute favorite were the chicken skins, but we would love to eat them all again. Superb!
We had decided on a three course meal. As a side dish we ordered the famous husbandry salad.
His starter was the Isle of Wight tomatoes, stracciatella, raspberries and Kombu. Mine was the mackerel, dill, yogurt and cucumber.
My fiancé’s dish followed the newest food trends. Isle of Wight tomatoes are some of the best in the country – they can be bought at a few London Farmer’s Markets – and stracciatella cheese has grown in importance too.
All two dishes were delicious.
His dish was colorful too.
The main courses were smoked Ricotta tortellini, Fava beans and preserved lemon and Cornish cod, Sutton Farm artichokes and Blue Potatoes.
The tortellini were light.
The fish was melt in the mouth and pairing up well with the potatoes and artichokes.
The husbandry salad was fantastic too with mixed leaves, candid walnuts and the citrus dressing.
Our desserts were green gooseberries, elderflower, meringue and puffed barley and strawberries, yogurt cake and cashew nut praline.
The combination was sometimes a bit unusual, but all was of a high standard and very tasty indeed.
The coffee came in individual cafetieres. It was very mild, subtle and smooth, together served with a miniature jug of milk.
The petit fours were sweet-savory muffins with courgette, walnut and rosemary. Again unusual, but seriously enjoyable and memorable at the same time.
The invoice was 120.38 GBP, ca. 136 Euro or ca. 155.20 USD.
We would return again, because the staff is very kind, the food is experimental, fresh and of high quality and the value outstanding in our opinion.
Would we recommend this restaurant to a friend? YES!
Would we want to enjoy lunch/dinner at this restaurant again in our future? YES!
Thank you and safe travels.30 Aug 2017