Galvin La Chapelle★ // Spitafields // London

Freshly awarded their latest star in 2011, the brothers Galvin (Jeff & Chris) are no strangers to fine dining, as they’ve been running the starred Windows at the Park Lane Hilton for five years already.

As you enter the ‘chapel’, you’ll be delighted and surprised by the beautiful decor.  By the time that you’ve surveying the dining room – with its high ceiling and the huge mezzanine – you will have already been transported by the faultless front-of-house staff to your table.

Though despite the stunning environment, the food is the raison d’être of La Chapelle, and you will not be disappointed.  However, you may be left with an up-and-down feeling.

The amazing deconstructed tagine shows-off a huge amount of skill and knowledge of North African food, with its superb pigeon breast and the very tasty couscous.  Similarly, the soft and delicate Dorset crab ravioli, with a simple beurre Nantais is gorgeous.

Though, some dishes failed to impress, like the salmon, which certainly did not hit the mark. The flavour combination is maybe too adventurous with its verjus reduction, as well as the cobnuts and peach, which don’t help to create balance.  It just goes to show that sweet and sour doesn’t always work.  Worth a mention too is the tarte tatin, which was classically done but doesn’t have an interesting twist that you would expect from a star.

Not that the quality isn’t there, you’ll just be left with a feeling of inconsistency. However, the overall experience is balanced by the amazing service and the heavenly atmosphere.

Square Meal
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