Last Updated on April 26, 2021 by Fiona Maclean
Frenchie Covent Garden – Open for (al-fresco) Business Again.
Life before Covid seems a distant memory right now. The London-Unattached team went along to Frenchie Covent Garden just before lockdown as a kind of treat, with a view to reviewing. And, before we could publish, everything shut. Rather than taunt the world with the excellent pre-Covid meal we’d enjoyed, our content went on ice and we were planning to wait until things started to open up again. This week we learnt that Frenchie is again open, albeit only for al-fresco food. But, that in itself is worth shouting about – hopefully, a sign that things are returning (slowly) to normal.
Frenchie Covent Garden is the new London outpost of the revered Frenchie restaurant, Frenchie To Go, Frenchie Wine Bar and Frenchie Wine Shop on Rue du Nil by Gregory Marchand. It’s a compact space in the heart of Covent Garden and when it’s fully operational there’s a restaurant, dining bar and kitchen table seating (where you can watch the chefs in action). We loved our meal, from the main dinner menu – and although you can’t order everything we enjoyed right now, we have no hesitation in suggesting that you try one of their takeaway or delivery meals. Or even just order a batch of house-made bacon scones.
We started our meal with the Frenchie signature dish of Salsify, Vin Jaune and Keen’s Cheddar Sauce, Cured Egg Yolk and Black Truffle. Creamy rich salsify tagliatelle with just the right amount of bite was slathered in an egg and cheese sauce infused with truffle.
And, Grelot onion with smoked eel, potato emulsion and hazelnut crumble as an alternative, provided a palette of contrasting textures and flavours. Beautifully Smokey eel contrasted with an immaculately executed and delicate potato foam.
The smoked trout main course came with Jersey royals, finger lime and kumquat. Beautiful slow-cooked trout with a light and floral mash that was infused with fruit. Delicious.
Welsh venison loin with Jerusalem artichokes, quince and chanterelle mushrooms was a classic dish, cooked to a perfect pink with a delicious jus and a delicate puree of quince and chanterelle. The wine pairing for this really stood out – Chateau Massereau was a rounded wine served at the perfect temperature with notes of tobacco, leather and blackcurrant.
Yuzu Mont Blanc for dessert was the weakest of the dishes for us with an overwhelming Yuzu puree dominating the dish. My dining companion has a bit of a chestnut fetish too – and I think this was just a step too far from the classic dish, no matter how dainty it looked
Praline and calamansi Paris-Brest though was delightful, the bitter and lightly acidic calamansi making a great foil for the crunchy choux pastry.
We popped downstairs to meet Victor Avonds, the new Head Chef and compliment her on the meal. I for one can’t wait until I can enjoy this kind of meal again. But, while it’s not possible right now to enjoy perfect, cooked to order and served immaculately meals in restaurants like Frenchie, we can all have a taste of what we are missing with some of the excellent delivery and takeaway offerings like the one from Frenchie Covent Garden. Their set three-course menu changes regularly and I’m looking forward to trying it for myself.
Right now, from Wednesday through to Sunday you can enjoy the following delightful seasonal menu.
Starter: Smoked ricotta, strawberry and peas salad with chives mayonnaise
Main : Herbs and brioche stuffed chicken breast, grilled green asparagus, roasted Jersey Royal potatoes and broad beans
Dessert : Pistachio tart with raspberry coulis and meringue
There’s also a veggie version – and a range of sharing scones. So, why not take a night off from the kitchen and enjoy a little fine dining at home.
Delivery is available within a three-mile radius of the restaurant – or you can pick up your food yourself
T 020 7836 4422
We also loved Lady of the Grapes wine bar, just around the corner, which we understand has a wine takeaway service now with a Deli offering too. And, we’ll always have a soft spot for Adam Handling’s Frog restaurant – he too now has a home delivery service appropriately called HAME – and we know he’s been doing great things supporting key NHS workers too. Do help keep London Restaurants afloat and treat yourself to one of these lovely offerings.