Quality Chop House, Christmas Lunch

Screen Shot 2015-12-18 at 15.38.05Where: The Quality Chop House, 92 Farringdon Road London

When: Christmas lunch Thursday 17th December

Ambience & Service:  

I really enjoy the set up here narrow wooden banquets line the walls and there’s a constant buzz of activity without being fussy or obtrusive. The blue and white tiling and decor retains the original style of when it was simply a pie cafe. The waiting staff are friendly and informative everything is served with advice but in a lovely non patronising fashion.

Drink:

A glass of Colet Vins Vatua! which is a Spanish sparkling wine whetted the appetite and had a buttery and more intense grape flavour that can absent from some more budget bubbles. After that we paired our food with a exquisite Château Capbern-Gasqueton St Estèphe, a full-bodied, deep red with a smooth and rounded finish that won’t break the bank. In fact the wine list at this restaurant is of a superior quality all-round with no bottle being absurdly expensive or marked-up.

Food: ‘Christmas Set Lunch Menu

Starters are shared amongst those in the party like an English tapas and these included:

Smoked cod’s roe, pig’s skin, egg yolk – this was like a giant pork flavoured quaver crisp, aerated and delicious that just disappeared on the tongue and was complimented delightfully by the salty fish and tiny little textures of egg.

Breaded brawn, burnt apple – slow cooked game meat (we believe Duck) lightly deep fried was divine and tender I could have eaten about a million of them in one sitting.

Beetroot cured salmon, horseradish, watercress – classic combination that doesn’t really need any explanation about how tasty it is, was and forever will be.

Game, prune & pistachio terrine, cranberry – this was crunchy and well-balanced and the cranberry chutney that accompanied it was sharp and bright and cut through the richness beautifully.

Carrot and Comte wasn’t sure about this to begin with as all you could smell was the pungent aroma of the cheese but actually the sweetness of the carrot really flattered the it’s nuttiness.

Main course again sharing plates

Angus beef ~ Topside & Smoked short rib genuinely once of the best plates of beef I have ever eaten especially the short rib which was smoked with pine and melt in the mouth and tickled all the tastebuds. The topside was served perfectly pink and carried such depth of flavour I could have kissed the chef(s) add a tiny slather of potent horseradish or mustard made it perfection.

Honey roasted parsnips – soft, sweet and moreish.

Brussels sprouts, chestnut, lardons, brown butter – how sprouts should always be cooked and then it they might increase their fan base.

Screen Shot 2015-12-18 at 15.37.04Confit potatoes – crisped within an inch of their life, a bit like those chips you get from the fish and chip shop at the bottom of your paper cone, but where you could still see the layers of buttery potato that melted in the mouth.

Dessert -not 100% necessary after the extra round of confit potatoes.

Chocolate ganache, peanut praline, salted caramel – I could not finish it as it was incredibly rich, and I’m more of a cheese plate kind of girl, but it was smooth with the salty nut cutting through the intensity of the dark chocolate.

Rating: 10 out of 10 -go here go here now and as often as you can, if you can’t sit and eat visit the adjoined butcher and deli and try and create happiness back at home.

 

Scoop by Evelyn Waugh

935885._UY200_Title: Scoop

Author: Evelyn Waugh

Review:

Lord Copper, newspaper magnate and proprietor of the Daily Beast, has always prided himself on his intuitive flair for spotting ace reporters. That is not to say he has not made the odd blunder, however, and may in a moment of weakness make another.Acting on a dinner-party tip from Mrs Algernon Smith, he feels convinced that he has hit on just the chap to cover a promising little war in the African Republic of Ishmaelia. One of Waugh’s most exuberant comedies, Scoop is a brilliantly irreverentsatire of Fleet Street and its hectic pursuit of hot news.

William is a wonderfully brilliant, eccentric and quintessential Englishman who you fall in love with immediately and who brings so much entertainment and mirth throughout the narrative. I really wanted to be his friend especially when he was choosing his equipment to go to Ishmaelia and it included a canoe for no reason whatsoever. Equally his absolutely bonkers wider family who all reside at Boot Magnet are genius and reminiscent of a scene from Charlie Bucket’s grandparents house. Lord Cooper is also fantastic and provides a character through which Waugh cleverly satirises the elite classes and the media.

Waugh’s flair and ability to capture people’s character traits is genius and this is a brilliant read that isn’t that long if you’ve got a to be read pile that’s quite high.

I’ve already got Vile Bodies on my Christmas list for this year.

Rating: 9 out of 10