The City has long been overlooked as a place to visit for dinner, it’s often thought that all you would find in your search would be; steak, suits, full bodied reds and a hefty bill. Let it be known that this not the case.
Being a self-confessed Londoner, I’m almost embarrassed to say I had never been to Leadenhall Market. Constructed in 1881 by Horace Jones, the covered market off Grace Street is famed for many reasons most notably “Potterheads” would identify the site as Diagon Alley from ‘Harry Potter & the Philosopher’s Stone’. There is however another noteworthy reason to visit Leadenhall Market, and that’s because there you will find a truly magical establishment, Chamberlain’s.
Chamberlain’s restaurant has a rich history, one that spans over four generations. The restaurants parent company, fishmongers Chamberlain and Thelwell, was founded in 1947 and located in another equally famous market – Billingsgate market. Chamberlain’s prides itself on delivering the freshest seafood from boat, to Billingsgate, to kitchen, to plate.
At the helm of this restaurant is the talented executive chef Andrew Jones, who uses his experience garnered in kitchens at the Westbury and Claridge’s and who won the Roux scholarship in 2004. Jones’s menu reflects nature’s harvest from around the British Isles, offering modern tastes and elevating simple classics.
Upon arrival, we were quickly greeted by the restaurants maître d' Stefan who swiftly took us to our seats and within moment’s Stefan returned with two glasses of champagne, a perfect reception.
A rich, warming and perfectly smooth bowel of Lobster bisque was a great start to an evening which went swimmingly. The bisque was accompanied by freshly baked bread, which then lead to a competition between my guest, and the bread, as to who could soak up the bisque the quickest. Lobster with mango, pickled cucumber & curry dressing was surprisingly delicious, the curry sauce was perfectly balanced by the sweet mango leaving the delicate flavour of the lobster flesh uncompromised on the palate.
Wild Scottish halibut was meaty yet delicate served with roasted chantenay carrots, black cabbage & a burgundy jus paired with a beautifully light pinot noir. With so many dishes to choose from I asked our server for a recommendation, the result was a whole Cornish plaice with samphire and seaweed butter paired with a fantastic white burgundy.
The tarte tatin was most definitely the catch of the day, it was moreish and was married perfectly with a glass of 2011 Monbazillac Domaine de Grange Neuve, Dordogne.
Chamberlain’s exudes class and sophistication but above all else delivers fine quality seafood in a finely wrought Victorian setting, which exceeded our great expectations.
For more details on Chamberlain's restaurant, click here.
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