The brother, my partner in foodie adventures, was back down in London again! This time we tried out Arbutus on Frith Street in Soho - a contemporary bistro serving Modern British/European cuisine.
Weaving through the crowds (tourists and slow-walkers!) and rushing like a maniac after collecting my online order from House of Fraser, we made it in time for our 7.00pm dinner reservation.
It wasn't that busy yet when we arrived, walking through the narrow bar area with high marble counters and stools, before entering the dining area.
As my starter, I had the Squid and mackerel 'burger', with Cornish razor clams. The burger was really flavoursome with a delectably springy texture. Razor clams soaked in the juices was fresh and tasty - I did like the little flower petals on them as well. Very happy with my choice - would definitely have it again.
My brother ordered the Warm crisp pig's head, served with potato puree, pickled turnip and pistachio. Another very good starter, though I still had an odd feeling at the back of my mind about eating pig's head...
The potato puree was smooth and rich, and I liked the little bits of crunchiness from the pistachio.
My main dish - Spit roast leg of Welsh lamb 'Lebanese style', spinach and lemon, which came with a small side salad.
First impressions (in terms of presentation) count, and I was a bit crest-fallen when my dish was placed in front of me. But I suppose taste-wise, the meat was nice and tender - maybe just a tad bit too much cumin (?)...such a picky eater.
Roast turbot on the bone, 'Grenobloise', Scottish girolles, crisp salad - clearly much better presented than mine!
A thick, firm piece of turbot that had a nice flaky texture - though had to be a cautious to avoid choking on the bones! Curious to find out what 'Grenobloise' was, I obviously Google-d it...(the wonders of the internet!) - basically it's a preparation of brown butter, capers, parsley, lemon juice and lemon meats with tiny croutons (Ahhh...). See, even eating teaches you something new everyday!
For dessert, we shared the Cold chocolate fondant which came with a luscious scoop of stout ice cream.
Service was generally efficient. I must admit that the noise levels did put me (and my brother) off a bit - we're obviously siblings that prefer a more relaxed and soothing dining environment!
Overall, reasonably priced for a Michelin-starred restaurant.
A bit of a short review...but there you go!
Got a few places I'm eying for my next visit, some requiring a bit more of a travel - good food is after all worth the extra effort.
Off to get ready for my first Rock Festival!
Have a great weekend x