Millennium Bridge, 1 Paul’s Walk, London EC4V 3QH
Price: £60 per person (drinks included) – overpriced.
Oh, I went into this restaurant with so much hope…with the promise of an outstanding view and fine Cornish food.
The view was nice indeed, with the Southwark Bridge on your left and the Shakespeare’s Globe and the Tate on your right, you can definitely enjoy the City in all its powerful and conflicting beauty.
I went to the restaurant with my partner and two old friends who we hadn’t seen for a long while. We were given a comfortable booths seating and we chose from a variety of meat and fish dishes. Sadly, we started to have doubts about the service since the drinks order. The place claims to have a Cornish menu and they list a Cornish beer. My partner asks: “How is this Cornish beer?” Answer: “Oh you know, Cornwall…it’s a region…a region of England”. Right…what a start. After a couple of probing questions we manage to obtain: “the beer is not blonde”. Thank you for the hint.
We could order our dishes without additional incidents. I have to say that flavours were a bit of a roller-coaster. I ordered Scallops with black pudding and parsnip purée (yes, as usual!) which were very soft and tasty, with the parsnip purée melting in my mouth. My main was the fish of the day, Hake with herbs risotto, but way way too salty. What a shame! The great chef Pierre Koffman says (and please imagine listening to his thick French accent): “the difference between a bad dish and a good dish is a pinch of salt”. This was definitely the case for my hake.
On the other hand, my partner’s Ramp of Lamb was nice and pink, not the best lamb I had in London but still good.
Given the Cornish roots of the restaurant, I thought that a cheese platter as dessert would have recovered the hake knock-out. Unfortunately this was not the case. Cornwall can offer amazing cheeses, but these were not the ones offered to me that evening, where I had pretty bland, standard English cheeses.
However, I was not as bothered by the food as I was by the service. Our bottle of wine was on the side of the table, externally, were it could be easily grabbed by the staff. Although our glasses were still full, the waitress decided to interrupt our conversation to ask if we wanted to have more wine poured. We all said we were fine. She did not stop there. Oh Lord! I swear, she asked like four times throughout the dinner. I hadn’t seen my friends in a long while, we wanted to have a nice chat, but no, she decided our glasses were not full enough! At the fourth time, I moved the bottle to the side of the table next to the wall. Five minutes later she comes back, her eyes looking for the wine bottle and glancing a startled look when she saw it was not within her reach. Thankfully, no more interruptions at that point!
Oh London, what do we have to do to enjoy your beautiful view by night! Well, I believe you will agree with me that some mulled wine and a nice walk on the south bank will do just fine.