Trendy restaurant metres from Goodge St tube station serving beautifully innovative dishes
My second visit to Dabbous and although the headline is that the dishes on this occasion were not as explosive as the first visit, this is understandable as the set menu for lunch was opted for this time as opposed to the showcase tasting menu. It proved to be a superb option and easily one of the best Michelin starred set menu packages that there is available and it is a winner for anyone that likes food and wants a degree of casuality about the process at the same time.
Getting straight to the verdicts I thought the duck egg mayonnaise with a hint of truffle on wonderful baked crisp was a genuine delight and the cod with beautiful tarragon cream sauce and chestnut puree was absolutely lovely (the hint of liquorice and mint notes from the tarragon and chestnut were the perfect balance to the rich cream sauce and the fish itself was perfect). The dessert which I regrettably didn’t taste was cleverly seved with its supporting chilled rhubarb mouth wash and I was infomed this and the trout starter were both delicious. All cheeses were English and all well chosen. The wine list by the glass was extremely good value and my Sauvignon Blanc (£6) did the job of providing a refreshing support act nicely.
Two other generic observations hit me on this visit: the first was that it was actually a joy not to have to wait 6 months for the table as was the case last time (which I’m sure is a small relief to the team as well in a certain way); the booking was made last week (at time of writing) and things have thankfully calmed down a little at Dabbous waiting list wise. The second is that I don’t recall a 3 course set menu for lunch on our last visit so the fact that it was available on this visit was a very welcome sight. At £28 for 3 courses and £34 for 4 courses at lunch (set menus) and for the quality and style of what is given, this is an absolute no brainer of an option to go for if you need a faster and more reasonable lunch menu at Michelin starred level. Genuinely lovely dishes and unobtrusive, attentive service, this remains an extremely good option in London and if anything, this visit has pretty much reinforced my urge to get back to do the full tasting menu again.
Food Grade: 87%
All I knew before going to Dabbous was that there was a 6-month waiting list to get a table on a Saturday for lunch and so my expectations were curious to say the least. On getting there, the interior was a little unremarkable but the dishes soon wiped away any concern I had as they were genuinely power houses of flavour, some of which I had never had before. The pea puree and pea ice refresher as well as the simple pickled oil vegetables were truly sensational and the corn on the cob was simple and had a childhood buttery warmth about it that I hadn’t had in a long time (genuinely since childhood as well!).
It was good to see such gutsy moves from the chef who, in his simplistic creations, gave a menu that I thought was a triumph. I now understand what the fuss is about, just a shame it is probably lost on many who may go there purely because of the ‘hot ticket’ factor. The food there was superb and this comfortably sits in the very top bracket of all 1 Michelin starred restaurants I have been to – I would rather have this menu than many 3 Michelin starred places. Suitable for any occasion as the food itself will delight everyone to the core.
Food Grade: 90%
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