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One Blenheim Terrace (CLOSED)

Restaurants, British St John’s Wood

Time Out says

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Some restaurants pride themselves on their pretentiously written menus. A thin slice of anything becomes a ‘carpaccio’; a pig’s parentage, life story and favourite music must be detailed.

Not so at One Blenheim Terrace, where the menu is such a retro read that, at first, you’re not sure if the kitchen’s genuinely stuck in 1970 or if the menu’s author is just having a laugh.

This may be the last restaurant in London where you can order Scotch egg, liver and onions, ratatouille and trifle from the same menu. But if you’re expecting ‘Abigail’s Party’, you’re in for a shock, as the execution is cutting-edge modern.

Duck à l’orange was fashionable in the 1960s, an Anglicised version of a French dish where duck is served with a sharp orange sauce to counter the fattiness of the meat. This modernised version had the duck fat already rendered away, but more strikingly, the dish has been Hestoned.

What looked like tiny egg yolks scattered on the plate were liquid-filled beads of orange that have undergone spherification – one of the techniques of molecular gastronomy unknown four decades ago, but now you can buy DIY kits online or from the pages of Delicious. On a bed of spelt with braised endive and blood orange sauce, it was an excellent, mischievious main course.

‘Lobster thermidor’ was another 1960s classic, in this case deconstructed into a large raviolo, topped with a bisque-flavoured foam and microgreens: lovely.

The deconstruction of heritage dishes continues through every course, with ‘leek and potato soup’ – blobs of starch in a consommé – to an ‘apple crumble’ that was a corral of fried doughnut batter balls.

The cooking at One Blenheim Terrace is fun and of a high standard – but the catch is that you pay the price, with most main courses in the £15-25 range, and some starters just under a tenner.

Dinner for two here will easily top £100, which may explain why most of our fellow diners were old enough to remember the fashion for profiteroles or wellingtons (meat baked in pastry, not the waterproof boots) the first time around.

 

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Details

Address: 1 Blenheim Terrace
London
NW8 0EH
Transport: Tube: St John's Wood tube
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