Saturday, 1 November 2014

LE CHALET, SELFRIDGES

Having missed out on the previous On The Roof with Q during the summer months, I was curious to check out Le Chalet, particularly after having a glimpse of the desserts on offer.
Yes, it doesn't take much to lure me in, especially when there are sweet treats involved. 

Operated by Des McDonald, the pop-up winter restaurant can be found on the Roof of Selfridges, and offers the best seasonal and locally sourced ingredients with a view of the bustling Oxford Street.

Thanks to Mr F, we managed to nab a table for dinner on a busy Friday evening. Cutting it quite close on timing, and after dodging the hordes of people on Oxford Street, we eventually arrived at the Christmas Express Lift. 

 

We walked down a path lit with pretty fairy lights before entering the cosy candle-lit restaurant which takes inspiration from a traditional ski chalet - decorated with wintry ferns and timber branches.


We were sat at our little table in front of the open kitchen, which thankfully had much better lighting - which is always works for me.
We started off with some champagne, or rather 'I' started off with some champagne...can't let a good glass of bubbly go to waste can I?

 

Followed by a delicious Gingerbread Slipper...


Moving on to the food, we ordered several starters to share between us. The peppered tuna was nicely seared around the edges, with a nice hint of spicy heat from the pepper and wasabi. A really pretty dish that was nice and light to start with. The cured salmon was served with some crisp breads on the side and beetroot and orange which added some zest to it. The Cornish crab dish was also very fresh with a nice hint of spice from the mustard. The fourth starter that we had was the oxtail and winter root broth with herb dumplings - not quite as pretty as the other starters, but it was one of our favourites. Warm, hearty, and perfect for the cold wintery months.


| Peppered tuna, wasabi avocado |

 

| Scotch cured salmon, beetroot and orange |


| Cornish crab, pickled celeriac, Colman's mustard |

 

| Oxtail and winter root broth, herb dumplings |


For mains, we had the venison and pork dish. The slices of venison were quite tender with a nice tinge of pink in the centre. I've never heard of "neeps" before, but later informed by Mr F, with his Scottish heritage knowledge, that it was basically short for turnip, otherwise known as a swede by others...? Maybe I should just refer you to Mr F for further clarification... 
I wasn't a particular fan of the "neeps" and the sauce... probably for the same reason that I don't like cranberry sauce with my Christmas dinner...
But that's just me, and I'm sure this will appeal to other people's tastes and preferences.

The pork was really tender and moist. Although not mentioned on the menu, the meat used is actually pork belly, which some may find quite fatty. I generally like pork belly dishes, so this dish gets a tick from me. Topped with some crunchy crackling and black pudding on the side.
We also ordered a couple of sides to share - broccoli with chilli and garlic, and the cabbage and chorizo.

| Smoked Highland venison, black pepper "neeps" |

 

| Spit roasted pork, chorizo cabbage, apple sauce |





And then it was time for the highlight of the evening - the main purpose of our visit, before we became distracted by the rest of the menu. As usual.

The dessert menu has been specially designed by Siobhan Ambrose, Head Pastry Chef for Des McDonald Restaurants. 
The general rule for me is to always order more desserts than the number of guests at the table, or to be exact, double the amount. I'm glad that Mr F and I were in agreement on this matter.


The first was the steamed chocolate and toffee sponge - served warm, it was nice and moist, contrasted by the cold and creamy scoop of ice cream. The second was the apple streusel tart, which had a light and flaky pastry, and served with a warm jug of creamy custard.
The black forest cheesecake was the prettiest dessert amongst the four that we ordered. Smooth and creamy with a nice oreo biscuit base, topped with sweet and crunchy meringue pieces. Overall a stunning looking dessert.
My favourite dessert was probably the eggnog snow egg. The trick is to first crack the crunchy layer at the top, before cutting into the light and fluffy egg white below. A simple process that dessert lovers would naturally understand, unlike some... (Sorry Wilkes, I couldn't help myself!)
A really great way to end the evening.

| Steamed chocolate and toffee sponge |


| Apple streusel tart with lashings of custard |


| Black forest cheesecake |

  

| Eggnog snow egg |



On the whole, I was rather pleased with the food and experience at Le Chalet, and I would definitely recommend a visit. If you're not quite feeling hungry, they also have a delicious list of drinks and chocolate cocktails (!) that look pretty tempting...
A great place to stopover if you're shopping in the area, or just looking for a warm escape from the wintry chill.

I'm starting to get that festive feeling, and now that Christmas is less than two months away, I feel that it is now the right time for me to start humming Christmas tunes...

The Cheekster, signing out x


2 comments:

  1. I love how cosy and Chrismassy this looks. I'd definitely have the tuna and the egg nog snow for dessert looks like Christmas on a plate!
    Lots of love,
    Angie
    SilverSpoon London

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    Replies
    1. Yeah, it does get quite busy in the evenings tho! And I'd definitely recommend getting both of them :)) xxx

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