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Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Fera, London.

I had no intention of going to Fera on our recent trip to London. Not because I didn't think it would wonderful (I knew it would be) but because I thought the cost would be prohibitive. We just couldn't stretch to the £120 tasting menu, so I tried to ignore the reviews as best as I could. Then someone pointed out the current three courses for £30 offer. There was no doubt in my mind that we'd have to go and do this. How about a sneaky lunch on Sunday before we have to get the train home?
Perhaps in years gone by I'd have been a bit uncertain in such a grand and beautiful space such as this one. I could imagine my parents whispering, 'it's posh isn't it?' I'd have thought, like them that this isn't for the likes of us. A glass of complimentary champagne later and I'm thinking, I truly belong in places like this! It's to my eternal sadness that I'm not one of the super rich. I can pretend for a few hours in restaurants such as this one though, where you get treated like royalty and eat the food of kings.
I've found that the higher up the restaurant, generally, the better trained the staff are. Fera is no exception. The service is excellent, understated and efficient. Even when I push my luck on the set menu. Could I swap this dish for that? "Yes no problem sir." I cheekily do this a few times and they don't bat an eyelid. Mrs Bacon glares at me a few times though.
The snacks in any Simon Rogan restaurant are almost my favourite thing about the meal. They are exquisite here naturally, as they are at L'Enclume and The French.
Rosemary cracker, blue cheese mousse, elderberry.
I try my best to eat as slowly as I can but they're gone in no time. Simply wonderful.
Stewed Rabbit, Lovage.
Mackerel, Horseradish and Seaweed. They keep coming.
I have to admit at this stage that I've had a few twitter conversations with head chef Dan Cox so a few complimentary dishes are sent out. This may have been the best thing that happened to me all year to be quite honest. (This is not a joke either).
Smoked Roe and Red Cabbage.
And the bread is just superb.
Onto one of the finest things I eat all year if not ever. Swede dumplings with Isle of Mull Cheese and Wiltshire Truffle is something I doubt I'd ever have ordered.
But my god, it is so beautiful. Mrs Bacon says, 'I'm going to cry when this is over'.
Brined ox tongue, Cornish carrots, pickled mushroom, buttermilk, tarragon & parsley doesn't quite live up the the previous dish. I'd thought that it'd be a proper ox tongue, missing out the 'brined' bit in haste whilst reading the menu.
Cornish Lamb, Sweetbreads, Potatoes and Onions, Garlic Chives, Apple Vinegar is the lamb by which all other lamb dishes must be judged. Memories of eating lamb as a kid at my granny's house flash across my mind, so intense is the flavour of the meat.
 Of the two desserts, a complimentary Chocolate malt nitro, prune and dandelion I'm not so sure about.
Better is the Chocolate cream, apple marigold, shortbread and rapeseed jam.
As expected, Fera is a fantastic experience with fabulous food and service to match. It makes you realise why spending all this money is worth it. Although in this case, the set lunch menu is an absolute steal. Restaurants like this one can make you forget the mundaneness and drudgery of life just for a few hours and that is absolutely priceless.
More High-res photos here.
10 Best Meals 2014.
Fera At Claridge's on Urbanspoon

2 comments:

  1. Ate the set menu on New Year's Day and have to agree with everything said in your review. Definitely one of the best meals (and best value) I've had in a long time.

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  2. I dream of the swede dumplings, I couldn't agree more, one of the best dishes of the year!

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