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Review of the reviews

There are not enough veal brains on British menus. I mourned the passing of Racine when that closed, because they did them so well in a caper- studded beurre noisette. Here, a lobe is lightly breadcrumbed and then sautéed to golden. It wobbles as if still entertaining the odd thought, but there is crunch. It is served with a glossy take on sauce gribiche, the may- onnaise element replaced by a shiny veal jus, like the varnish of a dining table you can see your face in. It

is a dish using an

Claude Bosi at Bibendum in London’s Chelsea is everything a great restaurant should be, says Jay Rayner

ingredient others would reject, raised to a certain majesty. In the same rescued, washed and scrubbed vein there is “My mum’s tripe and cuttlefish gratin”, an intense and serious stew of the two ingredients, each lending the other a leg up with funk and an encouraging stench. It is peppery and sticky. It comes with two thick, crisped slices of what Bosi calls a pig ear and ham cake. It is some- where between a bakery item and a terrine. I want a loaf of it. The gratin reminds me of a fiery tripe stew that Simon Hop- kinson still cooks; conscious or not it feels like a respectful nod. A pretty crab dish brings a whipped layer of brown crab meat, topped by finely

“It is a dish using an ingredient others would reject, raised to a certain majesty”

picked white crab, then a layer of gently understated elder- flower jelly. What makes it sing is the temperature: just warm enough to allow the flavours their voice. Main courses in- clude turbot and Dover sole, suckling pig and long-cooked goat. The latter is a take on surf and turf, the puck of sweet braised meat tumbling into its razor clams and a sauce made with sea vegetables. Meal for two, including wine and service: £180

Michael Deacon has mixed feelings about the small-plate menu at Jules in Putney, London If you use a smaller plate, you’ll eat less. Now, this may at first sound screamingly obvious – of course you’re going to eat less if you use a smaller plate, because a smaller plate can fit less food on it. That, after all, is what 'smaller’ means. But there’s more to it than that. There’s a psychological

difference. Eat

off a smaller plate and you’ll feel full more quickly. First, the tapas. The morcilla

balls were odd: imagine luke- warm black pudding coated in coconut. Like biting into a Boun- ty bar and getting a mouthful of dog food. Then cod brandade, which I didn’t like at all: cold and

12 | The Caterer | 28 April 2017

pasty, like Gollum’s skin, with squirmy green peppers. The fried prawns were al- right, and the accompanying oriental sauce had a nice little kick to it, but, like the morcilla balls, they really should have been hotter. The foie mi-cuit was a sour pink clay. For some reason, the small plates were much better. Although the

rice was stewy

rather than creamy, the rabbit in the rabbit risotto was beautifully tender. The roast octopus was complemented with a lovely gar- licky bedding. The pork cheek salad was tremendous: gor- geously succulent pork, given extra texture by a nut dressing. Score: 2/5

Enzo’s Kitchen in London SW1 is the most peculiar place, says Marina O'Loughlin Fritto misto features Sicily’s leg- endary red prawns so over-fried they could be crabsticks. Flabby panelle (chickpea pan- cakes), potato croquettes that would make Birds Eye cringe, arancini a soggy squelch of gluey starch – you could use these babies to create busts of Lionel Richie. This all comes on a board with half a baby plum to- mato and rocket leaves so knack- ered, they’re basically compost. But wait, what’s this? Sand- wiched between this sadness are pastas that are actually pret- ty damned fine. “Chef Enzo’s signature” is casarecce with Nebrodi guanciale and Bronte

pistachios. I’ve eaten this fabu- lous porker stuffed with wild herbs and baked whole in a vast, wood-fired oven in its native mountains, and it was one of the great eating experi- ences of my life. Unsurprising- ly, this doesn’t come close, but the dense pasta is al dente, the guanciale suave with fat and the pistachios the alluring grey- green of the real Bronte item. For £60 a head, I’d rather jump on Ryanair. Then I could sit at Satra, facing our chum Montalbano’s headquarters, and eat the real real thing. Price: About £35 a head. Rating: Food: 3/10 (7/10 for the pasta); atmosphere: 3/10; value for money: 4/10




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