Michel Roux Sr. was seated near the counter and had quite a fan club demanding his attention. Half of me wanted my very own photo with Mr. Roux but the other half simply wanted to leave the poor man alone to enjoy his lobster salad. The latter little voice won. Let the man savour his food!
The V.I.P. Lounge, right next to Le Gavroche, was a bit of a disappointment. It was over crowded and felt more like a cafeteria than a lounge. There was one highlight though: Michel Roux Jr. and his daughter, Emily Roux, were being interviewed. Michel Roux Jr. is one of my favorite chefs and I always enjoy being in his company… One of the questions he was asked referred to his favorite London restaurants. Loaded question! I will not name them all here but one stood out as a) I did not know it, and b) it was present at the fair: Benares. Conrad and I made it a point to scour the festival to find this little gem. And gem it was. We tasted the Squid rings with passion fruit chutney. The crunchiness of the squid rings was perfectly complemented by the sweetness of the chutney. Exquisite!
Let us not forget our little sedge way into seafood heaven. At Angler, we sampled the Seafood sliders (Thai mackerel and shrimp, lobster and hollandaise, fish finger and tartar served in brioche bun). Each little bun was perfect and we could simply not make up our mind as to the winner of the lot!
My sweet tooth than lead me to Alyn Williams at The Westbury where I “oohed and aahed” at the Caramelised white chocolate pannacotta, passion fruit and honeycomb. A smooth white chocolate base with crunchy honeycomb bits and topped with passion fruit foam: sweetness, softness, tanginess and crunch! Wow! Sadly no picture as I was too busy eating…
There are so many others that deserve a mention but we simply could not sample them all… Babbo, Bar Boulud, L’Anima, Launceston Place, Spice Market, The Cinnamon Club, to name just a few. We will return! And all the other stands that made the walk around a real enjoyment: Liberte (greek-style yoghurt), Lindt (chocolate), Cho (drinking gazpacho), Kamm & Sons (ginseng spirit), Oliver’s Bakery (bread and pastries), Mojito bar, Purbeck Ice Cream, Quebec (Canadian delicacies), Vita Coco (coconut water), The Tomato Stall, Yogi Tea. Phew, the list goes on.
Do not talk to me about food for the next 2 days!