A Tasty Start To The Year

Happy New Year!

I hope you all got what you wanted for Christmas, I know I did. I also got a surprise - a meal at Restaurant Gordon Ramsey on Royal Hospital Road in Chelsea! Having been there years ago I was quite excited when I opened my card and found that little piece of paper that said we were going. I think I might have yelped with excitement! 

Well, we went last night and I only need one word to describe it - WOW!

We walked up to the restaurant and had the door opened for us by a man standing outside. Wandering in we were instantly welcomed by someone and having taken our coats they showed us to our table. Within seconds someone else was coming over to ask if we wanted drinks. Sometimes fancy restaurants have a tendency to be too fancy, they make you uncomfortable and you feel like you have to whisper to your partner if you want to talk. Restaurant Gordon Ramsay isn’t like that at all.

The thing I noticed about this restaurant is the number of staff. There must have been ten or more constantly wandering around the dining area checking that everyone was happy. Not in the annoying way either, you know - when they come to your table, while you have a mouthful of food, to ask if everything was ok and you have to answer while covering said mouth with your hand. No, at Restaurant Gordon Ramsay the staff walk through the dining room and when you have finished a course they come over, remove the plate and ask if it was ok. Which it was.

The Maitre’d is hovering all the time and popped over to the table a few times to explain things on the menu or just have a chat while we waited for another course. He was very welcoming and made us feel like they were pleased to have us there, again not something every fancy restaurant can achieve. 

This pic was taken from a recipe book - I didn't think it was 
appropriate to starting taking pics of the food!

Now - the food. The most important part of this experience. Me and the hubby are foodies, we love to go to restaurants with and without the kids. We had high expectations. I have to say they exceeded our expectations. Every course they brought out looked amazing and was delicious. Usually my favourite course would be foie gras, it’s something I don’t get to have very often because there aren’t many restaurants we go to that serve it but I had it last night and it was yummy. However, there was one course that sticks out from all the rest.

Ravioli of Lobster, langoustine and salmon. This dish was amazing! I don’t know that I have ever eaten a meal that made me want to cry but this did, it was that perfect. The pasta wasn’t too thick or too thin, the lobster and langoustine were cooked to perfection and the sauce with it complemented the whole thing. This course made the night for me. Everything about it was right. 

After the meal, while I popped to the loo, oh on that note - their system is amazing. You don’t need to ask where the loo is, you just get up and someone immediately shows you the way while someone else is holding the door open for you! Anyway, after the meal, while I marvelled at their competence, the hubby was talking to the Maitre’d and was told that although we’d finished the meal the night wasn’t over. When I returned the Maitre’d headed over to our table to invite us into the kitchen! You have no idea how excited I was!

I’ve watched Gordon Ramsay on the TV lots, I loved Hell’s Kitchen and The F Word. Now, I didn’t expect to find him in the kitchen but I couldn’t wait to see it and watch the masters at work. We followed the Maitre’d towards the kitchen and he pushed on the door but stopped. We heard a woman shouting and the Maitre’d told us to wait a moment while she ‘had a moment’. The kitchen door had a window, I was too short to see through but the hubby said he could see what was happening and was giggling. We heard a lot of F words (hehe) and it seemed like someone had messed up. 

I don’t know why but when watching those programmes on the TV I always thought that stuff was exaggerated for effect but having seen and heard the stuff last night I can assure you it isn’t. I guess that’s what works for them and working in a 3 michelin starred restaurant ought to mean you know what you’re doing. If you mess up I guess you have to expect a bit of anger!

After the ‘moment’ had passed we were taken into the kitchen and the maitre’d pointed out where everything was prepared. The meat station, the fish station, the dessert area. The thing that struck me most about the whole place was how clean it was. Nothing was out of place, every surface sparkled and there were only one or two pans on the stove. I couldn’t believe the difference, my kitchen is never that clean and I don’t cook for more than twenty people every night. 

I’m sure these are among the many reasons why this restaurant has 3 michelin stars. It is the best restaurant I have ever been to and someone will have to work very hard to beat it. Hats off to Gordon Ramsay and Clare Smyth, the Head Chef. Last night was the best time I’ve had in a restaurant and having seen inside the kitchen I am even more amazed.

I would recommend this restaurant to everyone, if you ever get the chance to go, do it. You won’t be disappointed.

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