1 Lombard Street
1 Lombard Street
1 Lombard Street, 1 Lombard Street, London,An apology for the photos with this post; my phone doesn't 'do' atmospheric lighting!
I'd never heard of this restaurant before, but with a little search online, I found that until this year, it held a Michelin star. The chef patron is Herbert Berger and Tim Richardson is head chef, running the kitchen on a day-to-day basis. Before I go on, I must mention that after our first course, I popped to the toilet. (I know you're wondering why I comment on this, but please read on!) On the way, I came across the kitchens, and couldn't resist having a peep around the doors - well, one was open, so it didn't seem too rude. As I watched the bustle and preparation in awe, Tim Richardson invited me in! I was so excited, and couldn't possibly refuse! He showed me what happened at each section, how the restaurant and brasserie sections were under different chefs and what went where. He was really lovely, happy to chat and obviously very content to show someone round the kitchens without any worries on a busy Friday evening. I just want to record my thanks to him - it really made the evening and to see inside such a fantastic restaurant kitchen was a real privilege! Thank you!
The restaurant is 'housed' in an old banking hall and has a wonderful dome in the middle. We visited the brasserie section and the atmosphere was bubbling: There was a pianist playing at a lovely volume. The food all looked amazing; small, neat portions, beautifully presented.
The menu was a five-course set menu that we found on an offer, but the food was excellent. We began with a small cup of butternut squash soup. This was served in a little espresso cup and was rich, thick, creamy and well seasoned with a hint of pepper and spice.
We both chose cheese for dessert, a selection of 5: Cheddar, Reblochon, Camembert, Goat's cheese (at this point I had disappeared for another sneak peek at the kitchen and my boyfriend couldn't remember exactly what they'd said!) and Stilton. Now, in good restaurants I'm used to the cheese being served from mildest to strongest (again, my boyfriend insisted it was from hard to soft, but what I thought made more sense) so I was disappointed to find this wasn't the case. The Stilton was in amongst the mild and creamy goat's cheese and the Reblochon, which was possibly the mildest of the 5. If I'd have sequenced them, I'd have begun with the Reblochon, moving onto the goat's cheese, followed by the cheddar, then the Camembert, and finally the Stilton.
To Drink:We bought a bottle of French red, think it may have been a Cabernet Sauvignon for £20, which was light and fruity.
Value for Money:The set menu was £19.95 per person - excellent value. The wine, I thought, was a little pricey, but then it is a top restaurant, and we both finished with 'un cafe'. The bill came to £65, £73 ish with service. The food was outstanding, the atmosphere chilled and bubbling at the same time, and the service very good. I'd definitely return, again and again!