| Everyday London Life Restaurants

Grain Store – More than just mung beans

Grain Store is the latest restaurant from celebrated chef, Bruno Loubet. The chef has
gained huge praise for his self-named restaurant at the Zetter Hotel; so I was excited to try his latest venture.
The sign for Grain Store restaurant

What makes Grain Store a little different to other restaurants in London, is the team’s dedication to sustainability and the importance of integrating environmental practices into all aspects of the running of their business. Grain Store has also recently won London’s Sustainable Restaurant of the Year 2014.

I’m all for keeping it eco-friendly and my lovely friend Amelia joined me for lunch the restaurant based in Granary Square, a new development in Kings Cross.
The restaurant space is based on the idea of an ‘exploded kitchen’ where lines are blurred between kitchen and dining room and the cooking spills out into the dining area. The reality is a rather (oxymoronic) cosy warehouse!
The interior of Grain store restaurant
I also loved this neon sign in the bathroom!
Very random, but cool
And drinks served from a pram…
First a cocktail! Molecular mixologist, Tony Conigliaro is responsible for the creation of the cocktail list at Grain Store. Interestingly, he has taken inspiration for the Greco-Roman approach to wine by infusing herbs and spices into his cocktails.
We tried several! Well it would be rude not to…
The Twinkle!!
The cocktail fits with the oxymoronic theme of the restaurant. Containing vodka, elderflower cordial, champagne and a twist of lemon, this is a bittersweet symphony. The elderflower provides the sweetness but the lemon prevails! I loved it!
Roman smoked paprika white wine, or Grenache Blanc with smoked paprika cordial. While the Twinkle was light and fresh this was a little heavier and musky. The smoky flavour came through strongly and it was another winner for us.
The Amadeus; porcini amontillado sherry, truffle bitters and champagne.
It’s a mushroom cocktail!
Again another heavier musky flavour. Enjoyable, but earthy with a strong taste of alcohol.
The lovely Amelia is also a bride-to-be so we caught up with each other on wedding excitement and stresses over our numerous cocktails!
Cocktails sampled we turn to decide on the food. The menu is not anchored geographically, instead it ┬áreflects Loubet’s travels around the world as well as his love for his vegetable patch. At Grain Store, vegetables are just as important as meat or fish.
I was impressed with our waitress’s vast knowledge of the menu and the provence of the ingredients. She was able to describe each dish in minute detail. Points to Grain Store on service!
We decided to share a few starters.
Vegetable chorizo ‘scotch egg’ with fennel and aioli.
‘But how can it be a vegetable scotch egg’ I asked. Again Loubet plays with food and turns ideas upside down.
The ‘sausage’ part of the egg is made up of pulse and lentils.
‘Oooh, a healthy scotch egg?’
Well it’s deep fried but probably the healthiest scotch egg you’ll ever try!
The egg was cooked just right and the celeriac salad and aioli side was the perfect accompaniment.
Amelia chose celeriac remoulade, mushroom and duck liver pate with mulled wine jelly.
Kind of like Christmas on a plate! The pate was smooth and creamy, and it was Amelia’s favourite dish of the day.
I chose sprouting beans and seeds with miso aubergine, crispy citrus chicken skin and potato wafer. The dish was ok, but a little boring and not really enough aubergine. The potato wafers were lovely and crispy but the chicken skin a little greasy.
Starters done, we eagerly awaited our mains!
My main course was Vietnamese style salad with sea trout and squid a la plancha. It was my dish of the day, all the fish was perfectly cooked and the citrusy, zesty dressing went perfectly with my lemon Twinkle!
Butternut squash ravioli with sage and mustard apricots with pumpkin seed oil. Gorgeous soft pillows of pasta filled with creamy butternut squash. The pasta was a tiny bit over done, but overall a very enjoyable dish.
We couldn’t help but order dessert as we were so intrigued by the apple, blackberry and elderberry crumble with rosemary and olive oil ice cream. Another unusual combo by Loubet, but again it hit the exact right notes. The crumble was light and juicy and the addition of rosemary was a touch of genius.
Even the bill presentation matched the vegetarian theme of the restaurant.
It was lovely to meet up with Amelia and Grain Store is a totally fantastic restaurant. I definitely foresee and Michelin star in it’s future!

Grain Store
1 – 3 Stable Street
Kings Cross
London
N1C 4AB
020 7324 4466
Grain Store on Urbanspoon