Restaurant Reviews

Restaurant Reviews

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Fed up with celebrity chefs drizzling sauces over undercooked pieces of meat? I am!

I regularly dine out and am happy to share my restaurant experiences, and views on food, with you.

Monday, April 14, 2003


Restaurant

The East India Club
16 St James’s Square
London
SW1Y 4LH

Phone:- 0207 930 1000

Overview

I have to declare an interest with respect to this review. I have, since leaving school, been a member of The East India Club; one of the few remaining London clubs. The club, set up in the nineteenth century, is housed in an ornate regency style building in St James. It offers members a home away from home by providing them with; accommodation, meeting rooms, a library, dining rooms (both public and private), a billiard room, a smoking room and two bars.

Eva and I visited it last Sunday for the lunchtime jazz brunch; which is held every Sunday between 12:30 pm and 2:30 pm (the jazz continues until 4:00 pm).

Ambience

The high ceilinged dining room is spacious, comfortable and offers a very special traditional dining experience; far removed from many of today’s homogenous themed restaurants. We dined at a table that was laid with a starched linen cloth, napkins and silver cutlery embossed with the club crest; in the spacious high ceilinged room surrounded by portraits of luminairies from British history, such as Churchill and Montgomery.

The fixed price three course (plus cheeses and coffee) Sunday brunch was presented on a long table in the form of an assisted buffet. Light, non intrusive, live piano jazz was played and sung by a professional musician wearing a dinner suit.

Menu

The set buffet offered an excellent selection of cold cuts of ham, beef, chicken, smoked salmon, salmon terrine and potato salad as appetisers. The main courses on offer were a choice of roast rib of beef carved from a trolley, poached salmon and a curry. Desserts were a mouth-watering array of cheese cakes, gateaux and fruits. The cheese trolley, for those with hearty appetites, was overflowing with British and continental cheeses.

Service

Although it was a buffet, there were a good number of staff who poured our wine, offered us bread, arranged the cutlery between each course and removed the debris from the table after each course. I have always found the Club’s staff to be friendly and efficient, and am pleased to say Sunday brunch proved to be no exception to this rule.

Food

We tried a little of everything from the cold cuts for our appetisers, these were excellent; fresh, tasty and succulent. I was pleased to note that the dishes were replenished every so often, to ensure that the food did not stay in the open for too long. No dried, withered aged specimens here.

Naturally we both had the roast beef, with all the trimmings, for our main course. Eva had the well done part and I opted for the rare. I am pleased to say that the portions were professionally carved and were exceptionally generous. The meat was superb, tender and juicy; just as it should be. The beef was complimented by good quality roast potatoes, vegetables and piquant home-made horseradish sauce. I had a little fruit salad for dessert, Eva tried the cheesecake; which she professed to be excellent.

The overall meal, which included a bottle of Club champagne, came to £63. We even managed to take a doggy bag back home with us.

Overall Opinion

Absolutely splendid, we will definitely go there again for another brunch.

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