Small plates sensations
A newly opened tiny restaurant in Blandford Street, occupies the former space of the wonderful Roganic. Pieds Nus is a pop up restaurant by restauranter David Moore who is also owner of two Michelin restaurants in London: Pied a Terre and L'Autre Pied. Pieds Nus' concept is very different to his other two restaurants, while Pied a Terre is all about luxury fine dining and L'Autre Pied is more of an informal fine dining affair, Pieds Nus has a very laid back and casual interior, serving simple small plates of food but with top quality ingredients involving little to no cooking.
|Pieds Nus (photo taken from Pieds Nus Facebook)|
The menu is short, with about 15 dishes to select from, all served in small portions and ideal for sharing. We started off with some bacon and onion brioche, very savoury in taste and soft in the middle, which reminded me a little of the legendary bacon brioche from The Ledbury. Baby artichoke, wild mushrooms, pine nuts had a lovely sweet and bitter after taste with a good balance of soft to crunchy texture. The seared yellow fin tuna, pepper, black olive had a good harmony in flavours, the peppery and savoury notes really worked well with the robust taste of the raw tuna. Up next was the Scallop ceviche, the raw scallop was fresh and sweet, along with the fennel and the cucumber which was a total summer delight with the natural refreshing taste coming through.
|Bacon and onion brioche, |
black onion seed flat bread, humus
|Baby artichoke, wild mushrooms, pine nuts|
|Seared yellow fin tuna, pepper, black olive|
|Scallop ceviche, fennel, cucumber|
On to the meat dishes: The beef tartare is not your everyday tartare, it had a nice smoky and peppery flavour from the smoked eel and celeriac, while the watercress gave a little earthy spiciness, no Tabasco sauce required and just how I like it. The 65 degree 48 hour braised short rib with potato and shallot was stunning, slow cooked to perfection, rich, moist and packed with flavours. And the 98 degree 12 hour slow cooked pig belly was just as good, the meat melted in your mouth and had a beautiful texture. A very high level execution.
|Beef tartare, smoked eel, celeriac, watercress|
|65 degree 48 hour braised short rib, potato, shallot|
|98 degree 12 hour slow cooked pig belly, potato, carrot|
The dishes that failed to impress me were the desserts and this is partly because all the savoury dishes were of such high quality, I expected the same for the sweet courses. The carrot cake, pistachio, cream cheese were good, the cream didn't over power the cake and the pistachio added a nutty texture but it had no wow factor and most decent restaurants charging similar prices would had a better offering. New York cheesecake was more or less the same, classic combination with blackberry ice cream and blackberries, again it was good but nothing special at all.
|Carrot cake, pistachio, cream cheese|
|New York cheesecake|
I really enjoyed my dinner at Pieds Nus, I loved the concept of the place, taking the idea of tapas into modern European cuisine with great results. Judging from the food (apart from the desserts) itself, it can rival any other 1 star Michelin restaurants in London. In Ed Dutton, a former head chef at Tom Aikens, Pieds Nus has one of the most talented chefs in Britain. Also a special mention to its well priced wine list, some very decent offerings with a very affordable prices. According to David, Pieds Nus will be closed in April 2014 and I've already made a note to myself that I need to return to try all the other dishes I've yet to taste before it is too late.
£53 per head with 2 glass of wine
19 Blandford Street, London W1U 3DH