Even long before I started my food blog I had a geeky restaurant bucket list, a tick list of all the places in London that I want to visit. One of the best things about starting a blog has been meeting fellow bloggers with similar geeky bucket lists and ticking things off together. And at the weekend four of us decided to put a big fat juicy tick on the list and head to Spring Restaurant at Somerset House, an appropriate choice given the breaking season, warm weather and blue skies!
It’s safe to say that Spring Restaurant had me at ‘hello.’ Located in the New Wing of Somerset House, the dining room is just gorgeous – it’s all high ceilings, marble bars, big windows, white walls, bright lights and subtle art work. The ideal backdrop for four keen bloggers to write their story.
Part of the beauty of the dining room of Spring is the subtlety, soft leather seating and bare wood floors provide a beautiful backdrop but don’t detract from Skye Gyngell’s amazing food. Australian-born Skye won a Michelin star whilst working at Petersham Nurseries and in 2014 went on to open Spring to great success.
I also loved the individual lemons on the table, adding another element of vibrance and freshness to the room.
I mean even the bathrooms are gorgeous here! Pink-hued with marble sinks, filmic light bulbs and luxurious Aesop products. There’s also a separate bar area called the Salon, resembling a
conservatory it adds to the overall garden-like feel of the place.
Emma, Eppie, Reena and I settled into a window-side booth, ordered champagne and rhubarb bellinis and got started on the most delicious bread basket paired with perfectly salted soft butter. Spring has one of those menu where you know you could basically order anything and be happy. It makes decisions hard but gives a huge incentive to come back for more…
But it was the waiter’s description of my dish that won me over. Though all dedicated food bloggers, none of knew what carne salata was but he explained to me that it was a type of salted beef from Trentino. The producers actually sing to the cow in order to improved the quality of the meat. It sounds kind of weird but I’ve heard of these kind of practices before, cows being pampered with beer and massages for better beef! Anyway this highly prized meat was served with a spring artichoke that had just the right amount of crispiness, the appearance of the rose and a good dollop of sheep’s milk ricotta. Each element on the plate balanced each other out perfectly both in terms of taste and texture and I absolutely loved this dish.
Emma’s dish of scallops with cauliflower pureé, beurre blanc and chives was as pretty as a picture and tasty too! To my eye it was just right in terms of portion size and composition too.
Reena’s choice of buffalo mozzarella with rainbow chard, broad beans and lemon infused oil had so much green on it that plate just screamed spring-time. A reflection of Skye’s passion for seasonal ingredients.
Eppie was very intrigued to try the roasted wet garlic with goat’s curd and bruschetta and was definitely not disappointed with her choice! As we ate our starters we compared restaurant bucket lists, finding lots of crossovers and firmly putting a date in our diaries for the next time.
My main course roasted trout sourced from the River Test had the most perfectly crisp skin, served with soft braised fennel and a kick of chilli sauce. Left to season to taste, a sprinkle of the sea salt from the table perfected this dish. I’m a big fan of trout and it was cooked absolutely beautifully in my opinion.
I did however have mild food envy over Reena’s monkfish and clams with roasted almonds, rosemary and aioli, served with a really good hunk of sourdough bread.
Emma’s choice would suit a vegetarian and she loved the ricotta dumplings with wild garlic and ricotta salata.
Eppie’s meaty choice of pork and veal with yellow polenta looked like a hearty and more filling option and one that she enjoyed as much as her starter. The great thing about the food at Spring is that though it is complex and refined, it is at the same time just seriously tasty simple food perfectly cooked. Already hooked on the delicious food at Spring, none of us would be saying no to dessert.
I think I might have told you before that I’m obsessed with chocolate sorbet so that was the easy choice for me, along with a scoop of blood orange. I love it when a restaurant makes a little more of a simple dessert and I thought these ice cream cups were really cute.
Emma and Eppie both loved the hazelnut meringue with damson ice cream while Reena was very happy with her choice of gariguette strawberries, almond tart and vanilla cream.
I truly loved everything about Spring, the food was some of the best I’ve had in London this year and I think I’ve already gushed enough about the interior. Best of all it was the perfect place to catch up with like-minded people and there was no pressure to leave even though we were chatting long after we finished our food. With the weather so much improved Emma and I took a walk down the Strand and into the Mall with a Spring in our step.
Don’t you just love London in Spring time?
I thought I’d break up my Dubai posts with a little London restaurant review. I hope you like it! Do you have any special plans for spring time?
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