After our recent rose wine tasting, the husband and I, together with our friends the ‘Sloane Rangers’, found ourselves in a bit of a predicament. Essentially we were not quite shit-faced but certainly tipsy, despite scoffing several oysters, cupcakes, cheese sticks, freshly sliced iberica ham, macaroons and stawberries between us. Only one thing could help at this point; quick and serious carbohydrates.
So off we hopped behind the Kings Road, which the Sloane Rangers know like the back of their well manicured hands. A stones throw away from the gallery, we entered a blackened door and skipped down some steps into a rather intimate den. Floor to ceiling curtains frame the main dining area, whilst dim lighting and cosy booths fill the rest of the room.
Being a Wednesday night, it was pretty quiet, which we’d hoped would serve our cause for quick food. The bar menu reads rather more lavishly than most. It’s not every day you see fois gras and lobster on your bar snacks menu but then we were in Chelsea, so when in Rome…
I opted for the potted native lobster as did Ms Sloane Ranger, whilst hubby chose a ravioli but we were informed this was unavailable. Instead he was offered an asparagus ‘quisotto’ – any ideas?? It’s a quinoa risotto (I can just imagine the chef guffawing in self- appreciation at this!). Mr Sloane Ranger completed our hasty order with a rather luxuriant sounding duck burger and some home made french fries for the table.
Having completed that formality we moved on to drinks and were a but stuck. There’s only so many combinations of wine you can have in a night and I feared any more would throw me over the wall and beyond rescue. Not a great idea when I’ve a rather demanding baby to deal with in just under 9 hours time. So the husband rather cleverly switched us to amaretto sours. Somehow, the sours’arrived after our food but at that point we didn’t care as we were tucking into food, which disappeared down our gullets in a matter of minutes.
The potted lobster was beautifully succulent, with texture from the meat and creaminess from the well seasoned and garnished mayo. Not too rich and easily wolfed down. I’m reliably informed by the other half, that the quisotto was innovative in concept and well balanced in its execution too. Something we may well try at home. The duck burger which was only briefly seen in the picture taken below, was cut up neatly into morsels using a knife and fork (in fairness I may have made this bit up, who can remember?!) and was devoured by Mr Sloane Ranger.
Though almost faultless (home made fries were really thick cut chips, po-tay-to, po-ta-to I know but nevertheless), for me it wasn’t actually the food that shone in this basement establishment. It was actually the the amaretto sours. Sweet almond liqueur, tart and sour lemon juice, smooth egg white and that cherry, oh! It took the bartender a while but boy, was it worth it.
Apart from a mean amaretto sours I’m sure Le Cercle has much more to offer, though I suspect the takers remain largely of local origin. I can safely say on our visit it certainly did the job of providing some rather tasty morsels of food in super speedy time. And for that I am grateful.