Monday, October 26, 2009

Come Dine With Me - ' The Athenaeum Restaurant' London

I am always on the lookout for a new restaurant, all in the course of research - the type that involves finding a plush venue to woo the ladies with......and in doing so trying to avoid such a place that will inevitably lead to the 'de rigueur' phone call on a Monday morning from my bank manager, regarding my incalculable overdraft created in the last 48 hours, usually due to a lavish shin-dig of a weekend.

So when I heard the five-star Athenaeum in Piccadilly had just had a revamp I sort vengeance last Friday, as a result of another rather dire week at the 'orifice' - a seemingly all to familiar feeling of late!
My mobile, little black book and my plastic were now at the ready and fully charged!

I met my date outside Green Park tube station, a few minutes walk from The Athenaeum.
On arrival we were greeted by the suited and booted door stewards and the attentive waiting staff who took our coats.

We both indulged in a pre-dinner cocktail in the stylish bar (left) - all tasteful low slung red velvet seating with plenty of cushions and touches of vintage-style decor all around.
Delightful attention to detail.
I opted for a dry vodka martini, while my date had a 'Garden Of Eden' comprising apple vodka, fig, cranberry, peach liqueur and elderflower.
Both were made with panache and tasted superb.

We made our way through to the opulent restaurant(below right), designed so most tables nestle in a booth. My date's starter of Brixham Crab Salad served with a Golden Beetroot, Heritage Tomatoes and Tarragon Dressing (£11.75) was delightfully presented and my Diver Scallops served with Jerusalem Artichoke, Sweetcorn and Grapes (£10.50) was almost a work of art. It seemed a shame to disfigure it!

For our main courses my date ordered Pan Fried South Coast Lemon Sole served on the bone with Ceps, Caper and Parsley Butter (£28.00), whilst I opted for Smokey Hay Baked Venison served with Cheltenham Beetroot and Roasted Figs with Vanilla Sauce (£24.00).

We also shared three sumptuous side orders of: Sweet Stewed Pumpkin, Roasted Field Mushrooms, grilled with rock salt and Hand Cut Chips.

We washed it down with a lovely 2007 Chablis vino (£37.50).

Following coffee we then returned to The Bar for an aperitif. The bar's extensive list including a choice of 270 different whiskies proved a real talking point - one of them was £150 for a double! (In my head I could hear the cutting voice of my bank manager). We instead opted for a couple of Vanilla Mojito's.

As Oscar Wilde once said, "Work is the curse of the drinking classes."

'The Athenaeum Restaurant' is located on: 224 Piccadilly, London, W1J 7BJ
Nearest tube: Green Park.
Breakfast Menu: 7.00-11.00 Mon to Sun.
Restaurant Menu: 12.30-14.30 & 17.30-22.30 Mon to Sun.
Tel no: 020 7499 3464
Web address:

No comments: