Thursday, 3 November 2011

La Gaffe Restaurant Review


La Gaffe Interior

When my partner and I walked into La Gaffe my immediate thought was how tacky. It was like walking back into an 80's trattoria, with its fake murals, fake stonework and fake borders. After sitting down we started looking at three different menus; a la carte, specials and a set menu- It was then I was beginning to think we had made a mistake? How can you decide what to eat with such a wide variety? Then after settling in, I noticed the music; they were playing 80-90's music and both my partner wonderedif this was the 80's theme they were going for and decided to stay and enjoy it

Gamberetti alla Diavol
The expression ‘don't judge a book by its cover’ was the order of the day. I started with Gamberetti alla Diavol (pan seared prawns with mushroom, garlic and chilli in a tomato and white wine sauce). I was expecting king prawns and was surprised to see very small prawns in a ceramic dish in a tomato sauce. As I said about judging, despite preconceptions it was very tasty. The prawns were firm, the mushrooms soft and the garlic subtle. My only (minor) reservation was the dish was not spicy enough for me, but then I do like food with a kick. My partner had the Insalata D'Autunno (mixed roasted peppers with baby artichoke, avocado, tomatoes and olives on a bed of baby spinach and lollo rosso). It was a vibrate plate of colours, but apparently lacking in real flavour.

Insalata D'Autunno
Agnello Valtenlina

My partner followed his starter with Vitello Casa Nostra (veal with rocket in an artichoke and white wine sauce). The sauce had a wonderful full bodied flavour which complimented the tender veal, but it was such a small piece of meat and it was completely lost under all the rocket. I had the Agnello Valtenlina (grilled lamb rack in a white wine, rosemary and garlic sauce). When it was served I couldn't believe how much rosemary and garlic had been placed on the top of the burnt rack and thought I am going to smell of garlic for days. I personally don't mind, but not everybody wants to smell garlic on other people's breath. I scrapped all the rosemary and garlic on to a side plate and then devoured the lamb. Although the bones were burnt the meat was perfectly cooked, tender, moist with just a hint of pinkness to the flesh. What was a surprise was the over generous amount of garlic and rosemary did not overpower the lamb and there was just a slight hint of the two ingredients in the meat. I was very irritated by having to pay for a side order of vegetables (why do restaurants do this?) as the dish came on its own. So we ordered red cabbage, which was slightly overcooked, and broccoli which had a deep green colour with lots of crunch.

Vitello Casa Nostra
The meal was much better than we anticipated and with the 2 for 1 offer on the Tastecard, we saved ourselves £14, which made it even better. Now if I can just get over the 80's and get The Power of Love out of my head I will go back.


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