There’s always something a bit risky about an old classic having a revamp but I was definitely intrigued to check out the new look and menu at Le Pont de la Tour. The restaurant has had a prime spot by the river for years but in the last month it has been fully refurbished with art deco green leather banquettes…
And a beautiful dark wood bar. The signature terrace is still there, the perfect place for sipping cocktails in summer with a view of the Tower Bridge. I loved the refurb, everything was just classic and elegant – ideal for a ladies lunch.
I was meeting my new friend and fellow blogger, Lauren from The Lifestyle Diaries; Le Pont de la Tour has been one of Lauren’s family favourites for years and she too was very impressed by the makeover. We made our selection from the menu of French influenced dishes which was made up of nibbles, starters, sharers and bigger plates.
My starter of seared tuna with puy lentils and sweet peppers was cooked just right, very rare but slightly warm and perfectly seasoned.
Lauren also went for a light starter of marinated octopus with potatoes and chicory. I had a little nibble and I really enjoyed the acidic citrus notes that came through on the dish from the light lemon dressing. I love octopus but I have had it cooked badly many times, but the starter at Le Pont de La Tour was cooked absolutely perfectly and everything on the plate worked together in hermony.
Le Pont de la Tour is more than just a restaurant, there’s also a bakery providing bread for the restaurant which is sold in their adjacent food store. At the lovely little store you can also buy cured meats, cheeses as well as take away home cooked meals. There’s a wine merchants too, selling rare wines and spirits and offering tutored tastings with the resident wine expert.
And speaking of which it was about time for another drink, I was immediately drawn to a strawberry and vanilla champagne cocktail. It was a fab combination of flavours, I was worried it might be overly sweet but slightly acidic champagne balanced out the sweet flavours beautifully. I think I might have a new favourite cocktail.
Lauren’s was as tasty as it was pretty! Also a bubbly cocktail containing raspberry and limoncello.
I chose monkfish tail as my main course, not something I have often but it was perfectly cooked with a succulent meaty texture and paired beautifully with grilled squid, basil, capers and sweet pepper. It was also well seasoned and a small pinch of lemon was all that was needed to finish it off. Classic, simple cooking is the signature of Chef Frederick Forster, who has worked alongside Michel Roux Jr and Raymond Blanc.
I chose steamed spinach on the side.
Lauren, who lived in France for a year was happy to see one of her favourites on the menu and had no doubts about ordering beef tartare with triple cooked chips. She loved the juicy chunks of steak which had just the right level of mustard and seasoning running through it. We loved our chosen dishes but we both commented that had I been with Mr S or if Lauren was with her boyfriend Andy, they might struggle with the small portions. Mr S would definitely want double that beef tartare. But they satisfied us and left room for dessert.
My meringue and pineapple didn’t blow me away but it was a nice palate cleanser for the end of the meal.
However, Lauren absolutely loved her chocolate pot, and definitely won in the dessert stakes!
We were having such a lovely time together that we decided to head to another bar and grabbed a few cocktails at the bar at the Mondrian Hotel…funny how a 2pm lunch can turn into cocktails and not getting home til 8pm…
Lauren and I loved the new look of Le Pont de la Tour and we were incredibly impressed by the menu…in this case change was definitely a good thing.
Le Pont de la Tour
36D Shad Thames
020 7493 8403
Our lunch at Le Pont de la Tour was complimentary.