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.

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

Restaurant

The Bleeding Heart Tavern
19 Greville Street
Hatton Garden
London
EC1N 8SQ

Phone:- 0207 242 2056

Website www.bleedingheart.co.uk

Overview

Eva and I found ourselves out and about in the Smithfield area of London, on Friday evening. This afforded us an ideal opportunity to try The Bleeding Heart Tavern. This offers a selection of spit roasts and other British meat served with a French twist.

It is open Monday to Friday for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

Ambience

The Bleeding Heart Tavern restaurant is in the basement of the Bleeding Heart Tavern. Although it had no windows, it was modern, light, bright and cheerful.

The floors were stripped wood, the walls were painted a light yellow and decorated with large pen and ink drawings of chickens, cows and pigs. Lighting was provided by spotlights recessed in the ceiling. The tables were laid with linen cloths and napkins.

The restaurant was not very busy that evening, and even though we had not booked, we were given a nice large round table in a booth in the corner.

The staff, all French, were very friendly welcoming and efficient.

Menu

The menu offered a very good selection of British dishes including; onion and ale soup with cheese croutons, tartar of Scottish salmon and mustard on toast, poached free range egg on a crunchy vegetable salad, slow-cooked pork belly with an organic white bean stew, poached haddock topped with a poached egg on mash with hollandaise sauce and rabbit and ratte potato casserole with whole grain mustard sauce.

The meat is sourced from Smithfield, so it should be of good quality.

There were two wine lists available, one more detailed and extensive than the other.

Service

As noted the staff were friendly and efficient. The restaurant was not that busy, and so we received 100% attention; even down to the refolding and sculpting of my napkin between courses.

Food

I chose the black pudding on brioche for my starter. This dish consisted of chunks of black pudding interspersed with chunks of apple resting on a slice of warmed brioche. The dish was accompanied by a rocket salad, drizzled with grain mustard.

I was very pleased with my choice; the taste of the black pudding was well complimented by the apple, and the brioche provided an excellent base to soak up the juices.

I had half a spit-roasted chicken for my main course. This was a very generously proportioned corn fed bird, its flavour was tender and succulent. It was served with roasted potatoes in their skins and caramelised carrots and parsnips together with French beans. The chicken was served with a light jus, and tasted absolutely superb. An excellent choice, even if I say so myself!

Eva started with the tartar salmon. This was rather similar to the gravad lax served in Sweden. It was quite pleasant, but lacked the smokiness of smoked salmon (self evident, as it was not smoked) which I prefer.

Eva chose the roast pork for her main course. This was rather splendid, as it was stuffed with black pudding. Served with jus, it was accompanied by the same vegetables as my main course. I tried some of it, and was very impressed; the taste and flavour were well complimented by the black pudding.

I finished off with a dessert, a rarity for me. I chose the sherry trifle. Absolutely unctuous! Thick double cream, cherries and sponge soaked in an ocean of sherry. Top marks!

The meal which included pre dinner cocktails, Chablis and liqueurs came to £92 before service.

Overall Opinion

A very enjoyable evening, the Bleeding Heart is definitely worth visiting.

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