Before we get on to food I must put in a word for our sommelier - we kind of knew what wine we wanted but he was so thoughtful and knowledgeable, and didn't try to upsell. As someone who comes from a background where a bottle of Piesporter was the height of sophistication even though we were eating steak I can still feel a bit overwhelmed when it comes to wine but he made me feel those 6 evenings spent on a wine tasting course in Putney five years ago weren't totally wasted.
So, with a glass of champagne in hand, we read the menu, ordered and ate - it was all delicious, beautifully cooked, with magical little touches like the rissole that accompanied the venison - and the crab ravioli with its seafood bisque was something I would be happy to have for lunch every day - just the right side of grand French opulence.
I will let the pictures do the talking....
Buffalo burrata with tempura artichoke, speck, rocket pesto, vincotto and hazelnuts
Crab raviolo with samphire, brown shrimps, fondue of leeks and bisque sauce
Under blade fillet with shin and pickled walnut croquettes, triple cooked chips and béarnaise
Venison loin with rissole, choucroute, beetroot and braised shallot
Cheese and biscuits
Rose custard with orange, cardamom, saffron and pistachio
Accompanying it all were delicious wines including a slightly off-dry white from Luxembourg for our starters, an incredibly deep, spicy, complex Cote du Rhone with our mains and an amazing yuzu flavoured sake to go with the pudding. Service was friendly, efficient and professional - the whole experience was delightful, down to the bag of passion fruit marshmallows and chocolate truffles we were given to take home. When you next need spoiling go to Medlar.