No tasting no fun
Almost one year on, with the launch buzz and all the hype dying down, Fera is no longer the hottest restaurant in London. While the restaurant still fills up pretty nicely, you can easily secure a table in less than a week in advance. The menu has since changed quite a bit, with the tasting menu heavily reduced to just 6 courses. I always choose the tasting menu when I go to a Simon Rogan restaurant but for the first time I went for its set lunch menu.
|Jerusalem artichokes in goat's butter, hazelut, chicken skin|
|salmon, pickled celeriac, watercress, horseradish creme fraiche|
|cornfed chicken, BBQ leek, celeriac cream, ramsons|
I had the Jerusalem artichokes as my starter, it had a smooth and moist texture with a touch of sweetness to it. The earthy goat's butter with the crispy chicken skin linked up all the elements on the plate so brilliantly that I cleaned up the entire plate in no time. Main course of chicken breast with BBQ leek was a wonderful piece of cooking, the meat was as tender as you can get from a chicken with the celeriac cream working nicely along with the finely seasoned onion. The dessert was by far the weakest of the three courses, the smoked chocolate cream was challenging and the concept of peanut ice cream on top of such a rich taste was confusing.
|roasted hispi cabbage, violet mustard, chestnut mushroom|
|smoked chocolate, peanut ice cream and caramel|
|Bramley apple cake, cinnamon ice cream and pecan|
To sum it up, I had a good meal at Fera but I just find it lacked the sophistication and creativity in its cooking that I've encountered on my first visit. Personally I don't think set lunch or even the ALC menu can really showcase what Simon Rogan is capable of. The tasting menu is the only way to go if you want to truly experience the undoubtedly unique style of Simon's cooking. I am fully aware not everyone appreciates lengthy dinner with countless small plates eating but I just think his tasting menu offers so much more in terms of excitement and imagination which can take the diners to a whole new meaning in food.
What I paid:
£38 pp with water
Average cost without drinks and services:
£30 lunch menu
£95 tasting menu
49 Brook St, London W1K 4HR