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October 2017 / Food & Drink / by Becky Pomfret

A Glass Half Full

Being a wine-lover, as well as suffering from the common 21st Century malaise ‘Fear of Missing Out’, the sound of a restaurant that serves 110 wines by the glass is music to my ears. Overlooking Cavendish Square and just a few minutes walk away from the hustle and bustle of Oxford Street, Les 110 de Taillevent is the perfect place to lay down those shopping bags, or meet a friend after work, and to dine (and wine). The interiors are warm and inviting, with the wine itself taking centre-stage and appropriately bottle-green leather banquettes and dark wood features making it cosy and comfortable.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The wine list features rare and singular wines, carefully curated by Head Sommelier Christopher Lecoufle. On my recent visit, we are offered the choice of four wines, in 70ml or 125ml measures, exactingly matched with our choice of starters, fish, meat, desserts or cheese.  We also gratefully accept a glass of champagne to sip while we peruse the menu, and this certainly takes the edge off a hard day in the office. The menu consists of contemporary and seasonal French dishes, so it’s always current and evolving.  Developed by Alain Solivérès, Executive Chef of Le Taillevent and Emile Cotte Executive Chef of Les 110 de Taillevent Paris, it is interpreted and executed by chef Raphael Grima and each dish is both a work of art as well as a decent portion (not always the way!). The menu is laid out cleverly so that the four recommended wines for each dish is listed alongside, so as you run your finger horizontally along the menu you can easily pick from a range of different priced glasses next to your choice of food. We decide to let our sommelier choose for us and each wine is presented with its own ‘back story’ and tasting notes. We nod along as knowledgeably as we can and ooh and aah over every glass. To start with we choose a deliciously light Cornish crab remoulade and an egg mimosa – the chef’s unique take on a classic. These are paired with crisp white wines including a Rully, Le Meix Cadot 2012. We both have the Wales beef fillet for our mains and this is matched with a rich red; Saint Estephe 2012.  The beef has been aged for two weeks on the bone and could be carved with a butter knife, it is so tender. Somehow, as is so often the way, we find room for dessert and we opt for the classic rum baba, saturated with a very generous pouring of rum. We probably don’t need the glass of Hungarian Tokaji to finish, but by now it seems churlish to stop! We literally and figuratively roll out of the restaurant and into a taxi, bidding our farewells to the super-friendly staff, and vowing to come back as soon as we can.

16 Cavendish Square, W1G 9DD Tel: 020 3141 6016