January 10, 2010

Gastronomic Ultra-Marathon Part I

Happy New Year everyone! After some new year house troubles with my heat and hot water, I'm finally not cold and homeless anymore, just in time for the big London snow-in (or so the media puts it).

I still haven't blogged about the eating ultra-marathon that was Eugene's farewell. I seem to have been eating non-stop since November and I definitely have put on quite a few pounds, definitely need to start exercising. Anyway, there are too many restaurants so will do it over a few entries.

First up - Galvin Bistrot. This is the bistro, a slightly more casual sibling of Galvin at Windows. Simple french fare at quite reasonable prices. I had a mousseline with wild mushroom soup for my starter, which was an interesting play of textures. I had a simple sage and saffron butter pasta as a main. No surprises there, well-executed but not mind-blowing. Which is probably what summarises the restaurant. I probably won't go back since it didn't really stand out, but it was relatively easy to get a reservation even on the day itself.

09 Eugene Eating Marathon

Next we went to Hawksmoor. The rest had been raving about it for the longest time and I was curious to taste for myself what was supposed to be one of the best steaks (with very good cocktails) in London. Well, it didn't disappoint. I can't really remember what cocktails we ordered but I remember the guys had this big girly punch which was much yummier than the strong drink I had (and then gave away). For starters, we had the shrimp cocktail, some scallops and the grilled squid salad. While they're known for their shrimp cocktail, I really liked the grilled squid salad. And of course there was beef all around for mains. Other than the usual cuts on the menu, they had special cuts by weight on the daily menu, like the huge huge prime rib (? or was it the porterhouse) Eugene and Connie shared. The beef was juicy and flavourful (i.e. full of fat) but I couldn't help but compare it to the steak I had at Robert et Louise in Paris. I think that was better, though this was pretty close.

09 Eugene Eating Marathon1

By the time it got to dessert, we were all way too stuffed to properly appreciate the dessert - sticky toffee pudding, super sinful and super rich. The next time we go, I'll have to save space for dessert.

09 Eugene Eating Marathon2

Next up - Battle of the japanese restaurants!

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