It truly is a shame when restaurants open to great fanfare and critical acclaim and then slowly become complacent; in this particular occasion, the restaurant fitting the bill was Bistrot Bruno Loubet. Having just finished watching a performance of the San Francisco Ballet and being blown away by the poetry of movement, we eagerly trotted to the nearby Zetter hotel with high hopes and eager anticipations …
Starting off with Artichokes barigoule, soused mackerel and black olive oil croutons seemed an exciting way to begin the meal, but what came out was something straight out of a first-week culinary school dish. Under seasoned and undercooked artichokes, mackerel that had been cooked in a court bouillion that was far too light and unflavoured (and under seasoned) with triangles of tomato that were neither seasoned, dressed nor peeled and with no sign of a black olive crouton in sight. R’s Mauricette snails, meatballs and wild mushroom royale looked decidedly like a dogs dinner though it fared slightly better with the taste buds than my mackerel.
My main of Pan-fried lemon sole, courgette and leek cannelloni, light fennel sauce was a bit over cooked and the light fennel sauce was anyone’s guessing game as to its true flavour. Miss N decided to have a starter of Braised oxtail, smoked bone marrow, pumpkin dumpling which also looked like a dogs dinner and exactly the same as the Snails dish. The oxtail, too, could have done with at least another 20 minutes of braising as well.
A dessert of Tonka bean creme brulee with pineapple and passion fruit salad was decent as far as they go, but clearly not one to be writing home about.
Service was more miss than hit with requests for dietary adjustments having to be made several times before the waiter actually went to the kitchen and got the appropriate information for us and 2 requests for some bread were also clearly ignored.
Oh well, I guess that one won’t be coming back here again. Shame. Had such high hopes.