It’s almost two years since I first went to Brasserie Zédel (click here for review); a spontaneous stop one lunchtime because I’d heard great things about it. I loved it so much, I’m not sure sure why I haven’t been back; that is, until last night. Friend Angela asked me to join her supper group (the Zéds) that meets there about once a month and apart from the promise of meeting a great group of women, I was really pleased to be going back to the restaurant.
This wonderful Art Deco restaurant, once a ballroom in a 1930s hotel, is situated almost within sight of Piccadilly Circus so is in a great location and very easy to get to. It’s also a place that offers drink and food at any time of day – just like a Parisian brasserie. The Café at the entrance is somewhere you can go for morning coffee, a light snack or evening drink. The Bar Américain is the place to go for cocktails. Live at Zédel has cabarets and comedy. But it’s the grand – and I mean really grand – Brasserie in its wonderful, sumptuous surroundings that will make you feel as if you’ve been transported to Paris for the evening.
The first time I went I had the Prix Fixe menu at a bargain £9.75 for 2 courses, £12.75 for 3 (there’s no choice of dishes but it’s available all day). Last night we went up a grade to the Formule menu at £19.75 which has no choice for starter or dessert, but a choice between meat or fish for main course, and also includes a glass of house wine, water and coffee. So that’s a great deal too.
The first course was Céleri Rémoulade – a gorgeous raw salad of grated celery root and a mustardy mayonnaise dressing. It’s one of my favourite things and this one was excellent. It came with some wonderful French bread and pots of French butter.
The service is everything you’d expect from a good French restaurant: very professional, attentive – but not over-the-top friendly – and efficient. This is what I like! There were linen napkins, nice plates with restaurant’s name on them; nice little touches of luxury.
Some of the group chose grilled sea trout for their main but three of us had the Boeuf Bourguignon, which was a hearty dish with velvety smooth mashed potato and nice large chunks of carrot. The beef was melting tender as it should be and there was plenty of the rich gravy. A classic dish well done.
Another great French classic came for the dessert: Ile Flottante – poached meringues ‘floating’ on a sea of crème Anglaise. It was gorgeous. I said to Angela that I don’t think I’d ever had it before; I’d never chosen it from a menu. So here was the great thing about no choice – now I’ve tried it and it’s delicious! My kids often chose it from menus when they were small and we holidayed in France a lot but I guess I thought it not grown-up enough for me. What a mistake!
It was a wonderful evening: great company and Brasserie Zédel once again lived up to all the good reviews and word on the street. It really is a fabulous place and I definitely mustn’t leave it another two years before I go back!