This week, it seems, is to be a week of indulgence. Some might say over-indulgence, but salad for lunch, fruit for breakfast and a five mile run mean that on my rose-tinted planet the balance is even. So we kicked things off on Tuesday in sheer style at The Gilbert Scott Kitchen Table. This special evening arranged by Quintessentially Wine was to be an 8 course tasting menu with matches wines and an introduction by Mr Marcus Waring himself! At £225 per person, not the cheapest night out but certainly very very worth it.
I arrived. On time! And was greeted by Mr Waring and a glass of beautifully bubbling Laurent Perrier 2004. As we took our places and checked the menus I realised what a spectacular dinner this was to be. I won’t go through all the dishes otherwise this post will go on for days. But there are photos and some pretty outstanding dishes that I have to waffle about.
Herdwick lamb chop, rump and shank, with lovage’n’peas, Jersey Royals and spinach. Served on a carving board. Now, we know I have a serious bias towards Lake District lamb, and the Herdwick variety in particular, but this dish was executed to utter perfection. A slight char on the chop, the shank oozingly juicy – this had obviously been cooked for hours and hours! And the rump, gorgeously pink and tender.
I loved the mackerel dish, not only did it look beautiful, with the striking colours on the black dish, but it tasted great, with the smokiness of the mackerel balanced out by the potato and beetroot. There could have been a little more horseradish in the dish, but that’s be me being picky.
Now, this isn’t something I do very often, wax lyrical about a dessert, but the panna cotta was simply lush! (Yes I did just use the word lush!). The vanilla and raspberry combination it just summer in a pot for me – I wish I hadn’t been talking and drinking so much as I didn’t get time to drink it all.
The wines, now, these were pretty special. Again, I won’t bore you with all details. Each wine was introduced by Matthew Jukes of Quintessentially wines, who incidentally, writes the wine lists at Bibendum – random fact. The whites – my fave was the Te Whare Ra, Toru from New Zealand, it had huge flavour in the nose and if you didn’t taste it you’d assume it was going to kick you in the back of the mouth with all the ziggy gooseberries that a lot of Marlborough whites have, but… When drinking it, this wine is mellow and really quite simplistic – I mean that in a good way. It was so light, but with a little bit of crispiness that worked so well. Both the reds were lovely, but actually being the complete wimp that I am these days they were both too big for me. Moving swiftly and briefly on to the ‘daddy’ of dessert wines that Clos Dady – sweet, sticky, light, fragrant – I cannot get enough of this stuff. It’s from a small vineyard (I think) and the quality is top notch. Wine bore over….
If you can find the time / funds to go the the kitchen table at The Gilbert Scott; go! Having never been to a kitchen table dinner before, it was a fantastic experience and to be so close to the action while having flawless service (the waiter, Conran was a saint)!