| Everyday Luxury Restaurants

Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester: The Best Restaurant in London

I’m always one for milking a celebration – I like to celebrate my birthday for the whole month, not just a day…So for our special one year wedding anniversary we also wanted to include a return to the place where it all began. The Dorchester Hotel, where we celebrated our wedding reception and spent our first evening as a married couple. So it seemed only right to return to three-Michelin star restaurant, Alain Ducasse at the Dorchester.

I loved the beautiful floral designs created by The Dorchester’s in house florist, Phillip Hammond. They were so bright, fresh and springy! Now I’ve written about The Dorch many times on my blog before, it’s my favourite hotel in London because for me it simply defines luxury. I don’t just mean guilded furnishing, plush carpets and marble fixtures, it’s the levels of service in every area of the hotel. You feel so special walking into that gorgeous luxurious environment and receiving VIP treatment.

We love the Bar at the Dorchester, which is super glamorous but never feels stuffy like some hotel bars can be. I think it’s the red pointy glass things that make it so cool 😉

 

 

 

I chose a delicious crisp vintage Laurent Perrier champagne. Mr S, who likes to check out the signature cocktail, chose a Dorchester of London. A cocktail that was reintroduced to celebrate the hotel’s 80th Anniversary. Created in the 1930’s by the Dorchester’s legendary bar man, Harry Craddock the cocktail contains Bacardi, London Dry Gin and Forbidden Fruit Liqueur. The waiter warned Mr S that it was a very strong but he still pressed ahead, and of course the waiter was right to warn him!

Fortunately a rather lighter aperitif was offered when we got into the restaurant…

 

And it was time to toast our first year of marriage again!

Gougeres were placed on the table: delicious, light puffs of pastry containing an assortment of different fillings.

 

Our other snack was like a crispy fried ravioli, I’ve never had these at The Dorch before and they were totally amazing with a delicious creamy ricotta stuffing. Though I knew we had to pace ourselves, these were gobbled up very quickly!

 

Back in the old days, The Dorchester used to have a bread trolley, this was my dad’s favourite thing and he still asks, ‘Have they bought the bread trolley back yet?’ Well the answer is ‘no’ but there were still six different types of bread including a delicious bacon fougasse, olive bread and two types of baguette. Served with a creamy whipped butter or cream cheese.

 

Our amuse reflected the season with a gorgeous serving of the finest asparagus topped with caviar.

There are several choices of how to dine at Alain Ducasse, a la carte, the tasting menu or a special seasonal menu. We opted for a four course a la carte and the sommelier suggested that he pair each of our courses with a wine.

 

I was in no doubt as to the starter I was choosing, one of Alain Ducasse’s signature dishes, ‘saute gourmand’ of lobster with chicken quenelles and homemade pasta. It was an absolutely incredible dish with succulent hunks of lobster, pasta with just about the right amount of bite and a creamy sauce.

Mr S’s choice of chilled Scottish langoustines with mango dressing was another winner with the fruity dressing giving the dish a light and spring-like feel. I also loved the contrasting crunch of the crisp wafers served on top.

 

My fish course was a beautifully cooked John Dory served with artichoke, baby squid and lemon, definitely my favourite dish of the night.

 

Mr S chose wild sea bass with white asparagus and citrus. The plan had been to swap half way through, but I loved mine so much that I decided to keep it (sorry, Mr S – you married me and now you’re stuck with me).

My meat course was Anjou pigeon with potato gnocchi, girolles and confit shallots. Another delicious dish, I opted to have my pigeon rare and I loved how tender it was.

 

Mr S also loved his signature dish of fillet of beef rossini with crunchy cos lettuce and Perigeux sauce.

 

The the accompanying crispy twirls were great as a light alternative to potatoes.

Ok, so I wasn’t too full…yet…using great restraint I’d held back on the bread and gougeres in preparation for our epic feast.

 

A few petits fours came before dessert, unfortunately having consumed a fair bit wine I forgot to the the ‘blogger artistically holds up macaron’ photo. Apols.

 

Both our desserts were pink fruity and seasonal and we opted for a wild strawberry and rhubarb delight along with a red berry vacherin. The desserts were perfection, Alain Ducasse is well known for his excellent dessert and his pastry chef Angelo Ercolano has collaborated with him for 14 years to create desserts that are beautiful and incorporate the freshest seasonal ingredients.

‘Now, would you like anything else’ we were asked…I tend to avoid coffee late at night but we definitely weren’t ready to leave so we ordered mint tea…

 

I certainly wasn’t expecting an entire herb garden to turn up…

 

….and for the waiter to proceed to snip off the mint…

 

And brew our tea freshly at the table. Now that’s some really special service!

And it wasn’t over yet…

I’m sorry I can’t restraint myself from using the phrase, I felt like a kid in a candy store as the waiter bought over the ‘sweetie trolley’ – now this will go some way to making things up to my dad for sacrificing the bread trolley. From the trolley were actually able to choose our ‘going home present,’ I really did feel like a kid at the best party ever as we selected our favourite treats for our goody bag…

 

And, though we were well and truly stuffed we were presented with this gorgeous cake selection too.

Despite our minor hiccup on Valentine’s Day, my faith is well and truly restored and I can firmly say that I think Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester is the very best restaurant in London. The food is delicious and innovative and the standards of service are simply perfection.

Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester
53 Park Lane
London
W1K 1QA

020 7629 8866
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