Restaurants, French Maida Vale
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Everything about this elegant neighbourhood restaurant, from the classic handwritten menu to the Gallic service team and doorstopper of a wine list, flies the flag for all things French. There’s a leafy terrace outside to recreate memories of holidays past, while indoors, tapestries, wood panelling and crisp white napery make for a smarter look. Reassuringly, bonhomie between staff and customers warms up the atmosphere.

Cooking isn’t always first-class; highlights included a first course of sliced scallops and plump mussels cooked to perfection and sauced with a splendid saffron cream. Less dramatic, but just as tasty, pastel-hued hot pea soup delivered plenty of garden-fresh summery notes. Main courses were disappointing, though – pot-roasted chicken breast was too dry and the sautéed mushroom accompaniment uninspired. Similarly, roast duck breast was overcooked and the broad bean garnish and herby new potatoes couldn’t rescue it from mediocrity.

It took a jiffy to polish off the creamy crème anglaise from the île flottante, but the poached meringue had a discordantly salty flavour. Despite these occasional culinary misgivings, L’Aventure makes for a scenic setting and the service is spot-on.



Venue name: L'Aventure
Address: 3 Blenheim Terrace
Opening hours: Lunch served 12.30-2.30pm Mon-Fri. Dinner served 7-11pm Mon-Sat
Transport: Tube: St John's Wood tube or bus 139, 189
Price: Set lunch £18.50 2 courses, £21.50 3 courses. Set dinner £31 2 courses, £39.50 3 courses
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2.5 / 5

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Lovely restaurant, very nice meal, fab French food, merci bien, je revien...

My wife and I celebrated an anniversary here. We have eaten here before. We were very disappointed with the service and food. The waiter serving us ask a question without waiting for an answer, he served a table that arrived after us before serving us. My wife ordered a Kir Royale - which at £8.50 was not cheap, the glass arrived half full (although another waiter did top it up when asked). The all french menu was handwritten, making translating even more dificult. The food was bland and what should/could have been potentially very interesting seasonal food was let down by unimaginative ingredients. For example venison served with a tiny sprinkle of cabbage and chestnuts (why?) some very tough stringy herbs on a small triangle of rosti. I needed to add both salt and pepper to my main meal to give it some flavour Small portions, such as four or five mussles and one scallop in a dish made me feel like this was an expensive meal and not satisfying. We had a starter and main course, no wine, coffee or dessert and the bill was just under £90. Whether the chef and management have changed I do not know, but there was something different and this was very much reflected in the food and service. Shame as we will not be visiting again.