Rick Stein has taken over one of my favourite restaurant locations in London. Formerly it was a much loved brasserie in a prime location by the river in Barnes (Mortlake Actually) called The Depot. It’s a fantastic location and if you manage to secure a window seat you can admire the river and watch the sunset. Gorgeous. Alternatively go a bit early and head to the White Swan pub almost next door – they have a terrace and benches on the river where you can enjoy the views:-
Rick Stein, Barnes, in it’s new guise, haven’t changed much about the decor of the restaurant and the best bit is that they have hung on to our old favourite maître d’hôtel Monsieur Jean Francois – a real character and a much loved addition to the relatively young team – for continuity purposes (and humour).
We went as a special treat for my daughter’s birthday in November and had a lovely evening with the whole fam, but there was an issue we addressed post the evening, which they dealt with successfully and as a result, my daughter and I were invited back to enjoy another evening with them on the house. Our dedicated waiter was a charming chap from South Africa, very engaging and attentive.
You would be hard pressed to not enjoy the location and the space. It’s not cheap, but it’s always a good sign when the restaurant is almost completely full in January. Sadly it’s the wrong time of year for their fabulous Lobster Thermidor (and chips), but there was plenty more to choose from.
We started with the seared tuna and guacamole for my daughter, I went for the reliably delicious option of a plate of smoked salmon with horseradish mayonnaise.
For the main course, I finally chose one of his signature dishes, the Indonesian Seafood Curry with sea bass, cod and prawns served with pilau rice and a green bean salad (£25.95) DELICIOUS. It took me a while because I spent some time slightly agonising about whether this might be a waste of all those delicate flavours and should I instead go for my favourite plain old sea bass. However, for a change I went for it and was not disappointed, savouring all those different fish in a subtly spicy creamy laksa style sauce was sublime and I was pleased there were no mussels or scallops included. My daughter went for the Lemon Sole Veronique with a creamy vermouth sauce, muscat grapes and puff pasty fleurons (£29.95) which she loved.
Sorry, the photo does not really do it justice:-
On the dessert menu, they have plenty of delicious options, chocolate bomb, pavlova, cheese, lemon tart….but for some reason they didn’t have the Affogato that evening like they usually have – the well known Italian coffee-based dessert, which consists simply of a ball of vanilla ice-cream drowned in a shot of warm espresso. However, much to our delight they kindly offered to make that for us.
We managed to wash this all down with:-
2 x gin and tonics
2 x Wyebrook Estate Sauvignon Blanc 2018 Malborough (New Zealand) – delicious Kiwi flavours, quite dry for an NZSB but very good (£39 a bottle)
2 x Express Martini’s
And then we staggered home. Happy with our evening, happy with our catch up and happy with life in general.
Thank you team for a lovely evening!