Pique-Nique

Restaurants, French London Bridge
4 out of 5 stars
4 out of 5 stars
(1user review)
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Pique-Nique is a charmingly traditional French restaurant in Bermondsey from the folks behind Casse-Croûte. It’s in an odd building – a sort of mock-Tudor outhouse on the edge of Tanner Street Park, with an intimate dining room, an open kitchen and a rather kitsch, 1960s-style bar. Staff are affable and wonderfully French, sometimes incomprehensibly so. Likewise the menu. If your lingo isn’t up to snuff, Google Translate could be useful.

The food here is gutsy, rustic and extremely comforting. The bread, ever a useful French litmus test, was wonderful: both crunchy and chewy and, even better, slicked with an outrageous chestnut butter. I started proper with a light, creamy stew of crab and crevettes, with floating dumplings of chicken meat. It was marvellous: paprika-flecked and deeply flavourful. So was an intense champignon consommé, half submerging a disc of girolle ’shrooms – both earthy as hell and terribly refined. Close your eyes and you could almost be in rural France.

Of the mains, ‘perdix, châtaigne and choux vert’ was best: the dainty partridge’s legs and breast served tender and pink, perched on top of a charred hunk of cabbage and under half a braised shallot. The châtaigne (chestnut) appeared twice: puréed and strung through the bird’s jus, and in miniature, desiccated and chewy. It was a mass of brown, in a good way; autumn on a plate and quite satisfying.

There’s no denying that this is almost anachronistic stuff. It’s also refreshing in its knowing ignorance of modish small plates and trendy ingredients, and commitment to old-school flavours. Bermondsey’s got another Gallic go-to.

By: Tom Howells

Posted:

Venue name: Pique-Nique
Contact:
Address: Tanner Street Park
Bermondsey
London
SE1 3LD
Transport: Tube: London Bridge
Price: Dinner for two with drinks and service: around £115.
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tastemaker

Tucked away in the corner of a park just around the corner from the busy Bermondsey Street, Pique Nique is a great addition to the already vibrant neighbourhood spoilt with great dining choices!


The soupe de topinambour (artichoke soup) was rich and creamy - almost enough for a light meal if that's what you're looking for; but after having the soup I was tempted to take the plunge and also ordered the trout tartare which was fresh and full of flavours. I was also very jealous of my friend's entrecote which looked divine - might have to order this on my next visit! 


Lovely setting with great choices on the menu - I love that it's so tucked away and the relaxing atmosphere is perfect for a chilled Sunday lunch! 

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