Review Score: 87 / 100.
Marcus Wareing, one of the proteges of Gordon Ramsay, is a very prominent chef in his own right. His namesake restaurant housed in the Berkeley hotel, is of confident elegance and the food that matches it. After a long flight to London, and a very challenging offshore stint, this was what I’m truly hankering for. I opted for the 5 course lunch menu at 105 quid, which is the highlight of summer, although the weather doesn’t quite agree and hovering around 15 – 21 degrees Celsius at the moment.
Started off with freshly baked Potato and Fennel sourdough bread. The spice of the fennel was a nice complement to the warmth of the bread, which seems to bring out the scent. This was paired with a very good Irish butter.
We started off the meal with a dish of cured Mackerel, cucumber, mint, new potato, and bacon foam. A very delicate dish with a nice, salty balance from the bacon foam.
The next course was Sharpe’s Express 1900, which is a short Winter harvest potato, paired with pickled Girolle mushrooms, Tunworth cheese, and black truffles. The Tunworth cheese had been whipped into a rich custard that was then scorched. Very nice textures and loved the Tunworth cheese, which was rich and flavourful. The Girolle mushrooms had been pickled, and had a acidic and bizarrely sweet flavour, the latter of which seemed a bit odd.
Moving on was a dish of Pork belly from Rhug estate, served with carrot crudite, rose, carrot puree, and pork scratchings. The pork belly was perfectly cooked with a lovely, crisp skin. The pork scratching added a nice crunch to the dish albeit the Rose element seemed a bit odd and perhaps unnecessary in the dish.
For the final savoury course, was Herdwick lamb with crispy breast, pint, and pea. The lamb was well cooked and the crispy breast had a lovely crunch, but unfortunately the dish was a tad oversalted, which was a pity as the combination was quite comforting and could have been a stellar dish.
Finally, for dessert was Toffee, milk chocolate nougat, with lime Chantilly and Vanilla salt. It was delightfully rich yet well balanced with the hint of acidity from the lime Chantilly.
And the meal concluded with some very lovely Cinnamon financiers.
I would describe the cuisine as confidently French modern cuisine that highlights and brings local British ingredients to the fore. Generally, the food was very good and service was proper although the lead time between courses was a bit longer than expected for this level of restaurant. That said, one would eat very well here.
Location: The Berkeley, Wilton Place, London SW1X 7RL.+ 44 (0)20 7235 1200. Website.