Restaurants; Where shall we meet ... in Berkeley Square?
Saturday 07 November 1998
Garry, whose impressive track record has included Michelin-starring roles at Sutherlands and L'Escargot and then at the Marco Pierre White empire, has recently fetched up at Morton's, The Restaurant.
I have to say that I had a teeny qualm or two about trying out Morton's, partly because "The" in a name always reminds me of less propitious "The's", such as "Batman, The Movie", and partly because it's based in a gentleman's club, and my experience of these has been very much of the Dover Sole Dauphinoise variety.
Not here. The restaurant has taken over the whole of the first-floor dining room of this beautiful Regency building in Berkeley Square, with wonderful French-window views of the passing traffic and beautifully understated decor - huge mirrors, strange Japanesey dead trees and a charming hommage a Magritte.
True, it's not the sort of place where you would be inclined to dance on the tables, but in terms of formal dining, it's comfy enough to find yourself sitting next to Bryan Ferry without noticing.
And Garry's food is - well, it brings tears to your eyes; as will the bill, at pounds 50-odd a head. Even though my poor old body is getting a bit too feeble for haute cuisine, I glutted.
An amuse-gueule of sublime gazpacho contained an extra gift of a single slice of seared tuna at the bottom. The crayfish salad and my eating-conspirator's foie gras with scallops left us both feeling drunk. After rabbit with langoustines, decorated with teensy chanterelles and asparagus, I was delirious. I thought I'd collapse if pudding came anywhere near, but amazingly - and this is the test of a really good meal - my chococlate pave was so intense it actually woke me up. Friend had a lemon chiffon tart whose pastry was little short of angelic and which was accompanied by a passionfruit sorbet so powerful it actually made her squeak.
Thanks, Garry. My faith is restored.
Morton's, The Restaurant, 28 Berkeley Square, London W1 (0171-493 7171)
La Tante Claire
Berkeley Hotel, Wilton Place, London SW1 (0171-493 5699)
Pierre Kofmann's Michelin-starred diner moves to larger premises, with little change anticipated.
93-107 Shaftesbury Ave, London W1 (0171-494 3040)
Superb modern French food, with inventive flourishes.
La Porte des Indes
32 Bryanston St, W1 (0171-224 0055)
Up market Indian serves up French-influenced subcontinental food in sumptuous surroundings.
2 Kensington Park Rd, W11 (0171-229 4481)
European British food for the denizens of Notting Hill; great for vegetarians.
Stefano Cavallini Restaurant, 5 Halkin St, London SW1 (0171-333 1234)
Exquisite, if over-cool Italian. Heaven for business; not great for romance.
Artists unveils new exhibition inspired by Hastings beachart
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Pro-Russian rebel 'admits to shooting down plane'
- 2 Israel has discovered that it's no longer so easy to get away with murder in the age of social media
- 3 Israel-Gaza conflict: The myth of Hamas’s human shields
- 4 Amy Winehouse unpublished 2004 interview: ‘Ten years from now I’ll be 30, so I’ll maybe have one baby’
- 5 Dutch paedophile club to fight their ban at the European Court of Human Rights
Immigration Street meeting sees local residents demand producers 'go away' and Channel 4 scrap planned series
Hercules, review: Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson takes centre stage in preposterous film
Fight Club 2: Chuck Palahniuk sequel is a 'meta-fictional comment on the cultural response to the original'
Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy': A land of the outright bizarre
Can Secret Cinema sell 80,000 'Back to the Future' tickets?
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Vladimir Putin is given 'one last chance' to end hostilities in Ukraine
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: victims’ bodies bundled in black bags and loaded onto trains