Last year, E and I went to the restaurant Pied à Terre and munched through 10 courses of goodness. Birthday time came around again, and this year we decided to try the sister restaurant, L'Autre Pied.
It really wasn't difficult for either of us to decide on the 7 course tasting menu, and being a little bit cheeky this time I got the camera out to take a snap of each course. E decided to also have the six wine sampler with each of the courses. Knowing that I struggle with posh food and fancy wine together, I decided to be good and stuck with the gin.
So, first up... Chiled Carrot and Ginger Soup, Blood Orange, Cristallized Ginger, Coriander Cress
Very impressive from the first mouthful, it was deliciously velvety and we were able to taste all the different flavours individually. I found it quite filling, it looked like a small portion in the bowl, but there was more in there than I expected! We had some tasty olive bread to go alongside.
Second course... Poached and Roasted Breast of Quail, Broad Beans, Wild Garlic and Herb Broth
Again, great flavours. The egg was a lovely touch, the quail was tender and the broth was just light and delicious. I could have happily drunk a pint of it. The portion was the perfect size and not too heavy.
Third up...Pan Fried Cod, Wye Valley Asparagus, Jersey Royal Potatoes, Lightly Smoked Sabayon
The cod was falling apart lovliness, the potatoes were perfectly crushed underneath and again, each of the flavours individually stood out - even the tiniest piece of herb on the top of the fish.
Onto four...Roasted Loin of Pork, Potato Fondant, Peas a la Francaise, Tarragon Jus
Starting to get a bit full at this point, but the pork was deliciously tender. The potato and peas had a lovely bit of bite and the sauce was delicious (I love sauce of any kind really).
Fifth course... almost there now... Selection of French and British Farm House Cheeses
Bit disappointing here... the waitress brought out a platter of 6 cheeses and explained them each to us, but then it seemed like we couldn't say 'all of them please' so we ended up picking 3. We ate them along with some tasty crackers and I thought they were all nice but not outstanding.
Number six course... Vanilla Panacotta, Cinnamon Foam, Poached Rhubarb
After a decent selection of meat, fish, bird and veg, it was nice to have something light here. It was melty in the mouth, again the flavour of vanilla, cinnamon and rhubarb coming through in equal measure.
Finally at the end...White Chocolate Mousse, Toasted Almonds, Strawberry Sorbet, Almond Foam
I'm not personally a fan of white chocolate or strawberry sorbet, but this was perfectly fine to finish off with... light and tasty and a nice ending to the meal. Being very full at this point, I really didn't need anything heavy.
As with all the dishes, the presentation of the food was immaculate, as you can see from the photographs. The ambience of L'Autre Pied is very very different from that of Pied à Terre. The former has more of a bustle to it, it's a little more for casual eating with groups of friends. The latter you talk to your dining companions in whispers and it is a much calmer atmosphere. All in all though, the food was excellent, I'd definitely eat here again. 8.5/10.