Like the Queen my Dad had two birthday celebrations this year. The previous evening we were at Aqua followed by Pollen Street Social on the Friday. I am slightly annoyed in that I didn't take my camera and was going too, so again I only had my blooming phone which when the food is as beautiful as this I'm now kicking myself, the pics simply do not do the food justice - sorry Chef Atherton.
Having previously been to Jason Atherton's PSS for Mr D's birthday and thoroughly enjoyed it, we were looking forward to a second seating and also showing Mum and Dad a place that we loved.
We sat at the gorgeous and buzzy bar and enjoyed a blooming good cocktail (Princess Peach for me, wine and beers for the others).
|From the PSS website|
|Pic from Eating my own words|
Once we went through to the restaurant we were sat on the edge of the dining room right next to the fantastic dessert bar (if in a table of 2 I urge you to do this for your puds). You get to interact with the chef's and watch them putting the restaurants sweet treats together, a really clever concept that Pollen Street Social is now famed for.
|From the PSS website|
|From the PSS website|
Waiting for us at our table was a birthday card signed by Chef Atherton which I thought was a lovely touch and unexpected. It is always worth saying the the restaurant that it's a special occasion as they're always happy to do something for you.
When seated and orders taken we were presented with two types of warm home made bread (a perfect sourdough and white), a cod roe paste (yummmy!!) and soft unsalted churned butter. Next to these were two Harry Potter-esque books. We didn't have these the previous visit so assume you only get these with a la carte and not tasting menu...
(pic taken from another of my faves The chic Brulee)
Crispy pork skin - some of the best scratching I have ever come across. This was light, airy and not in the slightest bit greasy. Parmesan biscuits with a tomato, anchovy purée and caraway crackers with smoked cheese were the other two. Equally as good but not quite as memorable as the bad stuff! Lots of interesting textures and flavours, a great little pre meal.
All the ingredients are found or produced in the UK and therefore the menu reads as a celebration to British produce - fantastic!! After wondering what the table next door were eating I spied what it was and mum and I ordered exactly that:
Roasted Scrabster lobster, chanterelles, Iberico ham, young leek. The little lobby came out to say hi before being plunged into the pot (you don't have to see this if you don't want to). A handsome little chappy sat proud in his box whilst being talked about where he came from and to show diners that what you're getting is as fresh as can possibly be...
He was then whisked away and turned into a delicious lobster-rich broth with cubes of chorizo and sweet leeks. The lobster was cooked to perfection and pulled away easily from the shell. Such a treat and one that will be hard to beat!
For mains I was stuck between several things and therefore asked for our waitresses opinion. 'Lamb, definitely' and so my decision was set in stone. Rack of Lamb (from the Lake District), braised shoulder, fregola in basil, olive powder, artichoke and tomato chutney was placed in front of me and I was pretty happy.
Two plump pink lamb cutlets arrived with crisp skin. Some of the best and most tender lamb I have eaten in a long time. The little round fregola pasta was delicious eaten with the slow roasted shoulder which was bread crumbed and lightly fried. Tomato chutney was a little sweet for both mum and I however I could see that this would work well for other tastes. Overall a fantastic dish - thank you lovely waitress for your suggestion!!
Both Dad and Mr D opted for the Cote de boeuf 1kg for sharing, served with duck fat chips and salad - I can vouch that the chips were blooming good!!
We were then served a pre dessert which was a refreshing melon and chamomile tea sorbet with yoghurt foam and lime zest - delicious and perfect for pallet cleansing.
Mr D and I both chose the selection of five sorbets... which are all fantastic but it is rather huge so they should definitely say this is for sharing!! I chose out of the 15 (!!) flavours, raspberry, key lime and apple, melon, one I don't remember i.e. I didn't love it and pumpkin - get this if you go it's incredible!!
Upon leaving Dad was presented with a gift... he hadn't yet opened it however two years ago for Mr D's it was a beautiful square of chocolate cake decorated with gold leaf. Another lovely touch to a perfect evening - even if we were all a little sleepy from too many cocktails the evening before!!
Pollen Street Social is a thoroughly wonderful restaurant. It's top notch food in a relaxed, charming environment and I'm yet to find friendlier staff. It's an absolute must for a gorgeous night out in Mayfair.