Most food lovers should be familiar with Chef Jason Atherton — who was formerly working for Gordon Ramsay at the highly-acclaimed Maze restaurant. Within the past two years, he has slowly built up his restaurant empire around the world. Some of his restaurants include 22 Ships in Hong Kong, Table No 1 in Shanghai, Esquina and Pollen restaurant in Singapore, and of course, Pollen Street Social in London – the first restaurant that he opened back in 2011 after leaving Gordon Ramsay.
I have heard a lot about Pollen Street Social from friends who are staying in London, and have always wanted to dine at the restaurant. After having a meal there, I am delighted to say that it lives up to its billing.
Pollen Street Social serves a well-priced set lunch (2-course for £26 and 3-course for £29.50). The set menu is small and concise, with three options under each category. We began with a refreshing Colchester crab salad, English asparagus, citrus, radish salad. Also good was a beautiful slow cooked egg with mushrooms on toast and crispy wild cabbage.
Following which, we had a Roasted Cornish Hake cooked in red wine, and accompanied by broccoli stem, cockles, crispy quinoa and whipped artichoke. The fish was fresh and tender, but what worked wonders for the dish was how the crispy quinoa and whipped artichoke complemented the fish.
The other main course was the perfectly-cooked Muntjac Deer with beetrot, red onions, puree potatoes, with smoked beetroot juice.
A pre-dessert of Pear sorbet with vanilla cream was served to cleanse the palate. To round off the meal, we opted for the Tiramisu. It was a deconstructed rendition consisting of chocolate sponge, Italian biscuit, Kahlua jelly, chocolate, mascarpone and chocolate sorbet. It was, in essence, a brilliant pairing in terms of textures and flavours.
The set lunch menu changes periodically, so most of the items that we had are no longer available. But you can be assured that the food at Pollen Street Social is always up to standard.
There are many fantastic restaurants in London that offer excellent set lunches, but I would venture to say that Pollen Street Social has one of the most value-for-money options in town. For something more substantial, go for the 8-course tasting menu at £79.
Pollen Street Social
8/10 Pollen Street
London W1S 1NQ, United Kingdom
Tel: +44 20 7290 7600
Mon to Sat: 12pm – 2.30pm, 6pm – 10.30pm
Nearest Station: Oxford Circus