There’s obviously a boom in French Brasseries on the London restaurant scene, like the burger boom that started 2 years ago, French Brasseries are popping up everywhere. It’s not difficult to see why Brasserie dining is so popular—simple food done well, at reasonable prices and served all day long, what’s not to like? I’ve written recently about my love for Balthazar and have visited it thrice in 2 months. Just as I thought I’d give brasserie food a rest, Vanessa mentions Little Social and the great reviews, so we just had to pay it a visit.
|Cozy up to your date on these leather booths|
Opened by Jason Atherton, Little Social is the sibling of the successful Pollen Street Social (located opposite). The décor bears little resemblance to Pollen Street, Little Social is retro, old school with a bit of “back-to-the-future” (Neon lights on a wall). Red leather booths, antique posters and dim lighting make this a great date venue. It’s small and its cute, the opposite of Balthazar.
|Questionable choice of words for a restaurant, but I love the ambient blue light|
The menu offered lots of interesting combos, we heard that the cauliflower and crayfish risotto is a winner, but we went for Pork head and foie gras terrine served with a tea and prune puree and toasted sourdough because as far as we can remember, we’ve never had pork head before. Verdict: super yummy, love the sweetness and fruitiness of the puree, balancing out the richness of the foie gras.
For main we had the irish ox cheek, marrow bone crumb, carrot and horseradish mash. The ox cheek was slow cooked and was fall-apart tender. Add to that fatty marrow and a creamy mash and you have a seriously indulgent (but not heavy) plate.
As a side, we ordered the chips with gravy, jalapenos, chorizo and cheddar (not on the menu, but ask for it!). Apparently, one of the chefs is from Canada, hence the offering of this sumptuous dish.
For dessert we had the Hot chocolate moelleaux with sea salt and almond ice cream. Just like pollen street social, the star of the meal was the dessert. Hot chocolate moelleaux is like chocolate fondant with a liquid centre. But it more than just oozed chocolate, it was caramelly and the sweetness was so well balanced by the salt and almond ice cream. We were still scraping the sides when it was done, unwilling to let any of this deliciousness go to waste. It’s a big statement, but it’s the best chocolate fondant I’ve ever had.
In a nutshell: Little social is another level up from Balthazar. Food, service and décor were all superb. They do a price fixe menu for lunch and judging by the menu it’s a steal (21 pounds for 2 courses, 25 for 3). Will I be visiting again and again to try out the rest of the menu? Absolutely!! It's been a week since I visited and all I can think about is that chocolate moelleaux.