The Big Gay Foodie

The Big Gay Al's Food Adventures

Dinner at The Northall

Last night was one of the regular dinners with my Dad. We try and go out at least once a month for dinner and drinks so that we have quality time, catch up and just bond over some hopefully good food and drink. Sometimes it’s just us two, sometimes it’s with partners, but it’s just nice to try and make time for each other, and the importance of this is even clearer over the last year. 
We usually take turns to choose somewhere to eat, and last night Dad excelled himself having booked dinner at The Northall Restaurant in The Corinthia Hotel. This isn’t somewhere I had been before and I don’t think I even knew it was there but it was a rather spectacular venue to say the least. 

We met as we often do for a drink beforehand in a pub close to the dinner venue. After the obligatory pint of Old Speckled Hen at The Sherlock Holmes we went direct to the hotel to have a drink in the hotel bar before dinner. There are a couple of bars in The Corinthia, and we chose The Northall Bar adjacent to The Northall Restaurant where we were booked. 

 

The Northall Bar at The Corinthia Hotel

The Northall Bar at The Corinthia Hotel


As soon as we we walked through the heavy doors and into the bar, I was immediate struck by the splendour of the room. Large and airy, with a gold leaf ceiling and antique mirrored walls this was like some fairytale ballroom. A large light fitting in the centre provides an immediate and arresting focal point, sitting above what must surely be the largest marble bar in London. 
I am pretty confident that I can hold my own in all but the most pretentious company, and despite immediately feeling a little underdressed, we were quickly welcomed and made to feel welcome by the attentive staff. 
Hendricks and Tonic

Hendricks and Tonic

 

We were seated at one of the tables in the bar and quickly served with some aperitifs and snacks. I had my customary G&T while dad had a Negroni – a long time favourite. It’s funny how sometimes it’s the little details are the ones that make the biggest impression, here the Hendricks was served in the ideal 50ml measure with a sophisticated cucumber roll (better than the spear of cucumber so many bars serve today, if you get cucumber at all). I was especially taken by the way the drinks were served on little linen coasters with serviettes. See – I’m easily pleased really! 

After our drink we were shown through to the dining room, again a stunning but informal dining area decorated in a very mid-century modern style. 

 

Pickled Ref Mullet, Avocado Purée, Escabeche Dressing and Charred Cucamelons

Pickled Red Mullet, Avocado Purée, Escabeche Dressing and Charred Cucamelons

 
For my starter I ordered the Pickled Red Mullet, Avocado Purée, Escabeche Dressing and Charred Cucamelons, which was a beautifully presented spring dish. The mild red mullet was perfectly balanced with the creamy avocado purée, the sweetness of the dressing, the freshness of the cucamelons and the miniature courgette flowers and a hint of pepper from the other herbs and flowers. 
Dad had the Steak Tartare which was soft, fresh and delicious but a little overpowered by too much caper for my liking. I would have preferred the capers to be served on the side with some shallot to be added according to taste. That aside it was a very nice starter and not one that I see very often. 

 

Roast Middle White Pork Belly, Crackling, Caramelised Cauliflower, Fondant Potato, Shimeji Mushrooms

Roast Middle White Pork Belly, Crackling, Caramelised Cauliflower, Fondant Potato, Shimeji Mushrooms

 
For a main course we both chose the Roast Middle White Pork Belly, Crackling, Caramelised Cauliflower, Fondant Potato, Shimeji Mushrooms. Garnished with a pea purée, pea shoots and a jus – this was a very tasty, Unami rich course. It’s really quite a classic dish and it was very well executed. 

Next of course is dessert. While dad went for ice cream, I opted for a rhubarb dish. 

Warm Rhubarb Financier, Vanilla Cream, Rhubarb Purée and Rhubarb Crisp

Warm Rhubarb Financier, Vanilla Cream, Rhubarb Purée and Rhubarb Crisp

Despite not knowing exactly what it was, I ordered the Warm Rhubarb Financier, Vanilla Cream, Rhubarb Purée and Rhubarb Crisp. I still don’t know what a Rhubarb Financier is – sort of a rhubarb crumble cake/pie?! What I do know is that it was delicious and perfect to follow the pork as the sweet and sharp rhubarb perfectly cleansed the palette after such a rich main course. 
A couple of espressos to end the meal were accompanied by a delicious selection of little petit fours. 

All in all, it was a very nice meal indeed. 

 

The Northall Theatre Menu

The Northall Theatre Menu @ 21/04/2015

 
The Theatre Menu I thought represented great value given the setting, the service and the quality of the food. The website tells you;

Led by Executive Head Chef Garry Hollihead, The Northall celebrates the Great British Kitchen. Showcasing the breadth of Britain’s culinary strengths, the menu focuses on seasonality, sustainability, and traceability through close relationships with artisan producers.

I think that Garry Holihead’s approach and focus absolutely pays off, and all in all combined with the high service levels provided by The Corinthia staff and the stunning setting, this provided a very memorable meal. This most certainly has the Big Gay Al’s seal of approval and is highly recommended. I will be returning. 

Thanks Dad for a wonderful meal and introducing me to somewhere new. I guess the challenge is now for me to find somewhere for next month! 

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This entry was posted on April 22, 2015 by in Dinner, Drinks, Eating Out, Restaurants, Review, Savoury, Sweet.

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