Mar 2 2012 by By Emma Heseltine, Fulham Chronicle
WHEN you know you’re going for dinner at a hotel in Chelsea Harbour, your expectations are already pretty high.
If you add a five-star hotel into the mix, it’s fair to expect the food should be pretty good.
I went along to the Wyndham Grand Hotel with a friend to eat at its in-house restaurant, Chelsea Brasserie.
Immediately the dusk view over the harbour was stunning and enough to stop us in our tracks, while the piano playing in the background was reminiscent of a Manhattan cocktail bar.
We sat by the window so we could look out at the picturesque scenery, while the sommelier picked a bottle of 2010 chenin blanc to accompany our meal.
It was crisp and fruity, and turned out to be the perfect choice.
To start, I chose celeriac veloute with vanilla poached English apple, and the tastes complemented each other beautifully. The sweetness of the apple was the perfect contrast to the creamy veloute.
My companion opted for grilled octopus, which came with lentil ragout, Spanish chorizo and rocket cress. It had just the right amount of spice, and the octopus was tender although not my cup of tea.
I followed with organic salmon fillet and creme fraiche potatoes, sautéed lentils and thyme jus. The salmon was tender and went perfectly with the creamy potatoes, while the thyme jus lifted the flavours above what would otherwise run the risk of being slightly bland.
My friend chose Jerusalem artichoke risotto with goats cheese, which she said was perfectly cooked and not at all stodgy as risotto can sometimes be.
Dessert came soon afterwards, and the waitress assured me that the dark chocolate fondant would ‘change my life’.
I don’t mind admitting that it very nearly did. There is no better word to describe it than scrummy. It was rich but not sickly and came with ice cream to neutralise the sweetness.
My companion had the creme brulee, which she enjoyed, but she couldn't quite finish it off after having had two courses beforehand.
As we mulled over the dinner with a peppermint tea, we decided that with that view, the restaurant was the perfect spot for a date. The relaxed atmosphere and friendly staff will put you at ease, although you might be too busy gazing out of the window to gaze into each other’s eyes.