Friday, 7 October 2011

Andrew Edmund Review

Andrew Edmund

I needed to pick up my camera from a friend in Shaftesbury Avenue yesterday (6 October) and asked if they fancied going for lunch in "town" (London’s west end). Our plan was to go to a restaurant called Hix in Brewer Street, but luckily for me they were fully booked and we ended up at a small and intimate restaurant called Andrew Edmund, at 46 Lexington Street, which has been open for just under 25 years. That is incredibly good going for a restaurant in the centre of London, due to the fickleness of London customers.

You enter this very small and intimate restaurant, and because of its size the tables are crammed together. Even though there were empty tables upstairs we were told that we had to go downstairs. Which I didn't like, because it is fairly dingy and you get the cooking and waiting staff constantly going back and forth to the store room. Also there was constant stomping from upstairs- it reminded me of being a 20 year old living in a nasty cheap rented flat where there was no sound proofing and hearing the neighbours being amorous. When we left there were still empty tables upstairs which annoyed me. Maybe it was us and they wanted to keep us hidden from the other customers as we might put hem off there food, ha-ha. If you do decide to come, which I recommend, book in advance and ask for a table upstairs. I guess it would have been okay if there had been more people downstairs to create an atmosphere, but it was lacking on the day we went.

Carpaccio of Octopus
The food was very good and I started with a warm wild mushroom and lentil salad. The green lentils were firm with a wonderful earthy taste and the mushrooms were cooked well, with a fleshy bite. My friend had carpaccio of squid with shiso cress and a ginger and soy sauce dressing. The squid was fresh but a little chewy and was slightly overpowered by the dressing. I found the shiso crest very interesting. I've never had it before and enjoyed the unusual flavour. I have a couple of SE Asian supermarkets near me, so will
try and purchase some for more research.

Braised Lamb with Hisbi Cabbage
Whilst waiting for our main course I mentioned to my friend that I was worried about the lamb because I wasn't asked how I wanted it cooked. But that will teach me again not to RTFM (read previous post of the same name . We both ordered Braised Lamb with mash and Hispi cabbage (althoughthey spelt it Hisby). It was a lamb shank which had been slowly cooked and was so tender the meat just fell off the bone. The mash, which was really buttery, was sitting on top of the firm and crunchy cabbage, all in a warm tomato gravy. This was perfect hearty food for the typical autumnal day- sunny but cold and windy.

They have an extensive wine list, which can get very expensive, and they had red wine which could be chilled, it's not something you see very often. The list has an asterisk next to the wines so you can see which reds can be chilled and the waiter did ask if we wanted it chilled. With the dishes we ordered the chilled red wine complimented them perfectly.

The service was good but I actually felt we were a distraction from the action upstairs rather than customers. We were (at the beginning) the only people downstairs and so the waiter had to keep running up and down to serve us. But the waiter was always very polite and helpful when discussing the menu and about the restaurant. I did ask the waiter how often the menu changed, and was pleased to hear that they changed one or two dishes daily and so by the end of the week it's completely different. This was music to my ears because what I had eaten was truly tasty. If they change their menu frequently and it is as good as this, then I will be back sooner rather than later. I believe this could actually be the case because the waiter did say that they have a lot of regulars and my friend mentioned he had been many tims before which is why we ended up there, after our disappointment with Hix.

I was just checking out to see if they had a website and it appears they do not, but whilst checking I found a review, from the Time Out website (Edmunds T.O. Review ), which is a year old, it would appear that they take reviews in consideration. The reviewer for Time Out, had the same starter as mine, but with their starter it came with Manchego and he said it was disappointing. But with mine it came with pecorino, which gave the dish a deep salty flavour which didn't overpower the mushroom or lentils.


yummychooeats said...

I think I've seen this restaurant is it opposite another restaurant called Mildreds? That's one to try, the food was all vegetarian and delicious.

Donkey said...

Yes it is opposite Mildreds. I've been to Mildreds, but it was a very long time ago,I should go back, so thank you for reminding me, because I remember the food being really good.