Brasserie Blanc launches new look at Southbank branchCultureFood & DrinksNews & features
Forget the checked floor and bread baskets. Forget the brown leather booths that only the 70s could love. Brasserie Blanc’s Southbank offering has undergone a serious and much-needed makeover. Gone is the stuffy old space, replaced instead with an effortlessly stylish offering that just oozes self-assured charm. It’s a template for everything the modern brasserie should be: relaxed, elegant, friendly. The place hums with gentle chatter and guests quickly find themselves feeling quite at ease as they’re doted upon by the smiling staff.
The food, for the most part, sparkles as well. Oysters are snatched at with greedy abandon: fresh and salty, they’re unencumbered by any garnish save a squeeze of lemon. Kofta kebabs are cooked perfectly, moist, juicy and served with the faintest hint of spice. Potted Cromer Crab, with prawn butter and a shallot and coriander guacamole sounds a little odd on paper, but creamy avocado is an excellent foil for the potent shellfish. The result is a dish that’s intense and rich, perfectly complemented by the simple crunch of toast.
Pea and goat’s cheese topped pancakes follow the same formula, pairing classic flavours with admirable deftness. The same can be said for escargots, and for an excellent soufflé. The only disappointment is fried little cakes of chickpea that promise crunchy delight but sadly lack any real flavour. The smear of tomato paste on top adds a bright touch, but they’re ultimately rather bland. It’s a rare misstep and certainly not an egregious one, an almost inevitable by-product of playing it safe.
That’s why you’d come to Brasserie Blanc in the first place of course: to have reliably great food without having to worry about all the frills and the experimentation. In a city where syringes are used to serve up sauce and every third restaurant seems desperate to have a philosophy, there’s something rather comforting about chefs like Blanc who have the confidence to just let their food do the talking.
To book a table at Brasserie Blanc, 9 Belvedere Road, Southbank, London SE1 8YP, call 020 7202 8470 or visit here.