I met Mr Gosling for lunch after he’d completed the London triathlon and I’d had a long lie. Tredwells from Marcus Waring is the winner of AA’s Restaurant of the Year 2015/16 and I love Marcus’s cooking so my expectations were high.
We waited over 20 minutes to order a drink and it was a further 15 before anyone came near us to take a food order. The restaurant was busy but no so busy that the indifferent and inattentive service was excusable.
When we did order, our waiter didn’t seem that familiar with the menu. When our wine was finally on the table, it stayed there unopened as the waiter suddenly left knocking a fork to the floor. A few minutes later another waiter arrived, opened the wine and poured it without allowing us to taste it first.
The fork remained on the floor.
Finally food arrived, warm rosemary and potato which had a beautiful crust although by this point I’d have been grateful for anything ( we sat at 3 and I realised I hadn’t eaten at all beforehand).
Our starters arrived pulled pork and chorizo ravioli, pickled cucumber, peanut, chilli & sesame for Mr Gosling and Brixham crab, peach, elderflower, kohlrabi, lemongrass for me.
The ravioli smelled incredible, that beautiful fragrant scent of sesame oil. It’s an interesting combination of flavours and it should have been stunning but the pork was a little, dry and the chorizo undetectable.
I love crab but it’s such a delicate flavour that I really couldn’t decide if these flavours work with it. The kohlrabi was tasteless and the peach purée was very sweet. But it did grow on me but I’m not sure I’d order it again.
We were hopeful that the mains would wow us. Before they arrived we had a visit from yet another member of staff who apologised about the earlier wine abandonment. He gave an extremely bizarre reason for it, which, frankly, made no sense at all.
I stuck with fish, roasted monkfish, squid, chorizo and sweetcorn. It was very good, three large meaty pieces of fish perfectly cooked on a bed of creamed corn, toasted kernels, squid and chorizo, with a generous sprinkling of tarragon. The balance of the fish with the sweetness of the corn worked well and I love tarragon.
The Herdwick lamb rump was served with braised lamb belly, piquillo (sweet pepper) & sumac (a berry with a lemony flavour) creme fraiche and smoked aubergine.
The rump was beautifully cooked, moist and tasty and the braised belly had a great texture and flavour. The creme fraiche offset the richness of the lamb, and it’s something I want to try to recreate at home as it would work well with most meats.
Our side of broccoli with almond butter and capers was divine, the smoked potato and Gruyere croquettes tasty but not as I had imagined them in my head.
I don’t have a sweet tooth but in the interests of research I’ll always accept the offer of a second spoon. Like the rest of the menu at Tredwells, the pudding list is extensive, 15 options in total, which for me is overwhelming.
We opted for the sweet taste of Tredwells, this comprised of salted caramel & praline chocolate tart, salted caramel soft serve (be still my heart) and finally marinated pineapple & coconut mousse.
The tart was rich yet the chocolate praline was lovely and light, the soft serve with crumbled honeycomb was my favourite, but then I am in love with salted caramel. Finally the coconut mousse was light and palate cleansing.
We had a complimentary Sancerre by way of apology.
The food on the whole was good but the overall service and experience just wasn’t good enough to justify the price and from a restaurant with Marcus Waring’s name above the door I expected much better. In a city where several new and exciting places open everyday I don’t expect to be rushing back.