Monday, 9 May 2011
The Gilbert Scott at St Pancras NW1
The Gilbert Scott - named after the architect responsible for all this splendour. The other half and I were lucky enough to get a sneak peak at the restaurant before it officially opened, thanks to some friends who know the main man himself. I have to admit, getting to shake Marcus' hand on the way in did make me slightly star-struck - in this age of instant celebrity, meeting a true master of their craft is actually something worth getting excited about. (On that note - I include in that category novelists, musicians and actors who can actually act). Anyway, enough name-dropping - on to the place itself. The bar as you walk in is really cool - great seating, fantastic lighting (including enormous bells hanging from the ceiling) and most importantly brilliant cocktails, including one that was delivered out of a soda siphon (very carefully!) We could have happily spent the evening downing cocktails but were shepherded into the main room - which is grand in all the right ways and harks back to the days when dining at a railway station was a real event. It reminded me of a pared back version of Le Train Bleu at Gare de Lyon in Paris (if you haven't been - go). Unfortunately I was in the middle of a 5 week battle with a super-cold virus and I could barely smell or taste anything, which was hugely frustrating so it's hard to report on the food. What I can say is that I loved the menu - very traditional British dishes, local produce and fully in keeping with the overall vibe. I can't wait to go back and actually taste the food properly - my 3 dining companions loved everyting they ate. I know it's a little weird to blog about a restaurant and not describe the food but come on, it's Marcus Wareing, the food is going to be good. Plus the location is amazing and you can jump on a train to Paris after dinner -what's not to like? And if you can't get a booking at the Gilbert Scott (important to note that the bar is open to non diners also), buy yourself a sandwich and stand and admire the magnificence of this building - even more beautiful given how close we came to losing it forever.