Tuesday, 26 July 2011

F is for France @ Le Relais de Venise L'Entrecote

It has been a while now, over two months since our little jaunt through the alphabet in London town. But we’re back.
After many people had been on holidays to Spain, Ecuador, Colombia and Morocco since our last outing back in May. Whilst poor old me hasn’t even left London in all that time. Boo hoo.
So I am making up for it with a quick jaunt across the channel to France. This time to Le Relaise de Venise L’Entrecote for some steak frites in Marylebone.

This place does one thing and one thing only. Steak and chips, and to be honest with the quantity they churn out, they do them very well. Which is pretty bloody surprising as we were there in total for around two hours including queuing time and it was constantly full with a never ending queue churning around the corner.
The sheer volume this restaurant does on an evening is staggering. It’s a good thing that they do one thing and one thing only. I’d hate to work in that kitchen though,  everyday doing the same prep. Make special sauce, blanch chips, cook steaks, dress salad leaves. Yawn yawn yawn. But for the owners its damn good.

I initially suggested this place as a bit of a joke to everyone, as one of our party has a problem deciding on what she wants to eat. I think everyone else got the joke but her, and to top it off she ended up making the final decision. But at least there were desserts for her to ponder over in the end.
So the 6 of us sat down and the only thing to choose was which wine we wanted to drink and how we wanted our steaks cooked. Three chose rare and three medium. All these we were told was in the French style.

To start the meal off, you are provided with a plate of dressed lettuce leaves and walnuts. I’m not a big salad eater in restaurants and this has put me back years. It was pretty dull, wet and not very attractive. If I wasn’t here for the steak this would have made me cry. I’m sure my old chef would have told me to walk if I sent something out looking like that. Not a good start.
Thankfully the main was a hell of a lot better. If you didn’t know you got two portions of the steak and French fries, then you would be seriously saddened by the small portion you received first time round.
My meat was cooked to a perfect French rare, which is how I like it. To be honest I have no idea how the steak really tasted as it came thinly sliced and smothered in their Special Secret Sauce. This closely guarded secret is from what I can understand, made up of chicken livers, thyme, cream and Dijon mustard. Bloody good it was too.

The fries are not bad, not quite as crispy as I would like, but the second set we had delivered to our table by the delightful French waitresses with their ooh so French attitudes, were a lot better.
The only choices you have is on the dessert menu, where a montage of French classic puds live.

We also have a dessertinator in our ranks, who could quite delightfully eat her way through dessert after dessert after dessert. For such a tiny thing she managed to eat a tower of a pud all to herself. For her sins she was slightly hyper afterwards with all that sugar in her veins, we all were not surprised.
All in all Le Relais de Venise is not a bad place to eat. You could do a lot worse, but with a group of friends it is a fun place, and with the queue constantly outside, everyone else is thinks the same as well. 

Le Relais de Venise on Urbanspoon


Adie Andrews said...

I don't know for the main course but the desert deffinitely make me dream about it.

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Mzungu said...

Adie - They did look pretty good....

Ute@HungryinLondon said...

I have only eaten there once, quite a while ago, and I loved it(the steak, not the salad). It's so nice once in a while not having to choose... But I was early enough not having to queue.

Mzungu said...

Ute - I'm glad some of our party were queuing for a while before we turned up.