Cigalon // Holborn // London

Located in the grey streets around the Royal Courts, Cigalon is an inviting, bright refuge to enjoy some good heart-warming food. With its high ceiling, ornate chandeliers and pale pink banquettes, the décor is calming and welcoming. At one end of the dining room is an open kitchen, which adds to an informal feeling.

Once seated, tapenade is served to whet your appetite. Tapenade rather than butter because Cigalon is a restaurant that celebrates cuisine from Provence. You’ll figure this out pretty quickly after you glance over the menu with dishes like salad Niçoise salad and pissaladière making an appearance. Though, there are a lot of other non-Provençal dishes on the menu as well.

As a starter though, you should definitely try the steamed courgette with spicy quinoa and pistou – the Provencal version of pesto. For your main course, dedicated carnivores should ask for the rack of lamb or the beef onglet. As these are grilled, there’s no special recipe but you’ll really appreciate the quality and flavour of the meat. For a side, go for the black olive mash, which is really tasty and another taste of the sunny South of France.

It’s also worth noting is that although this is a French restaurant, vegetarians haven’t been forgotten and will be pleased with the roasted artichokes, cauliflower mash and some delicious sautéed girolles.

Cigalon offer outstanding value for money with both its set and a la carte menus.

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