My favourite kind of date night is the surprise ones- and what an incredible surprise this one was…
I have a confession. I hadn’t actually heard of Galvin La Chapelle before. The Michelin stared restaurant is set in Spitalfields, and even the building is impressive. A rescued church hall, it boasts incredible wooden beams with chandelier style hanging lights. The historic is balanced with the modern, with a glass mezzanine overlooking the restaurant. As we sat down to our taster menu, I was already excited.
We started with a Lasagne of Dorset crab, Beurre Nantais & Pea Shoots, which my boyfriend described as the ‘best thing he has ever put in his mouth’ (a slightly worrying way to describe it). Delicate and creamy it was delicious and set the bar high for what was to come.
It wouldn’t have been a French meal without foie gras. The Ballotine of Landes Foie Gras, Confit Quince & Brioche was rich but balanced with the confit quince.
A truffle risotto may not seem overly adventurous, with truffle seeming to be increasing popular. However, a good risotto is a different beast entirely as I discovered. The Risotto of Burgundy Black Truffle, Artichoke & Cèpes was probably my favourite course.
For the fish course we were treated to Wild Sea Bass, Marinière of Cockles, Sea Beets & Jersey Oyster. Accompanied by a Greek wine, (Jersey Oyster 2015 “Ovilos“, Biblia Chora, Greece) and a truly mesmerizing description by the Sommelier, I felt transported back to summers in Greece eating fresh fish by the sea. Well- it was either the food, or the fact I was now on my 5th glass of wine….
The Tagine of Bresse Pigeon, Couscous, Confit Lemon & Harissa Sauce transported me back to our time in Morocco and provided multiple elements to enjoy.
The truffle honey in our cheese course (Saint-Nectaire, Confit William Pear & Truffle Honey) was a real discovery. Aside from the fact I love truffle anyway, the sweet honey mixed with the truffle and the cheese was a real discovery. I managed to find some at The Fine Cheese Company if you want to recreate this at home (which I will be doing!).
Finally we finished with a Apple Tarte Tatin with Normandy crème fraîche. I always claimed never to be a fan of tarte Tatin, so was more looking forward to my desert wine, but I had to eat my words. Gavin LaChapelle you have converted me- and I have found a new favourite desert.
As a parting gift we even received a cookery book- although I doubt I could recreate the food of the evening…
It was a magical evening, full of beautiful food and incredible wine, leaving me dreaming of our next visit. The taster menu was a lovely way to try a number of the incredible dishes Galvin La Chapelle has to offer and I would highly recommend the paired wines, with the Sommelier not only telling you what you’re drinking, but creating a whole kind of magic around it too.
Chris and Jeff Gavin have restaurants in multiple locations. For more information visit their website: https://www.galvinrestaurants.com
Galvin La Chapelle’s website and booking can be found here: https://www.galvinrestaurants.com/section/61/1/galvin-la-chapelle