Brasserie Blanc sits stylishly on Charlotte Street, achingly French and resplendent with giant candles dripping wax and whimsical décor in muted tones. The service could not be faulted; my friend Federica and I were treated like VIPs the entire night, but were given enough space to talk in our little booth without staff hovering distractingly nearby. So much for the atmosphere and service – what about the food?
The meal kicked off strong. To start, I went for the potted Cromer crab and prawn butter with toasted pain de champagne, which was deliciously flavourful and light enough to not have me feeling bloated before the next course. Federica opted for one of “les classiques” – the BB Cheese soufflé, baked with warm cheddar sauce – a cheesy delight of both lightness and creaminess – thoroughly pleasing and highly recommended.
Things began to flag at the main course, which was not as impressive, though not bad. I went for one of the day’s specials: Monkfish, scallop and clam ragout. The monkfish was a little overcooked, and the dish was light in both texture and flavour. The Vinuva pinot grigio I had to accompany my meal was nevertheless refreshingly sweet. On the opposite end of the scale was Federica’s choice of the Boeuf bourguignon, slow-cooked with red wine, lardons, braised baby onions, mushrooms and smooth mash. I thought it was delicious from my sampling, but to eat the entire dish was a heavy affair, and she found the flavours overpowering. The Limoux pinot noir she chose however did not disappoint, with a fruity, rounded flavour.
Sadly it was a bit of a stumble at the last hurdle with the desserts. I ordered the Chocolate soufflé with pistachio ice cream. The soufflé texture was rich, but it was a bit too sickly sweet, and the ice cream portion was tiny and underwhelming. Federica’s baked Summer berry savarin with strawberry sauce and Chantilly was prettily presented but was otherwise something of a disappointment, overly sweet and dull in texture.
Brasserie Blanc is, however, a classy joint and we both enjoyed ourselves. The service was impeccable and the ambience of the venue is well-maintained. Hidden away upstairs are also two spaces for more private events, the chilled out Clubhouse, complete with coffee tables and bar, or the more formal Hideout dining room, both of which are beautiful. Thoroughly recommended.
Price – £84 for three courses for two.
Ambience – 5/5.
Service – 5/5 excellent.
Bathroom – 4/5 clean.
For reservations and further information please visit: brasserieblanc.com