Les 110 de Taillevent in Marylebone: Great wines and an authentic slice of Parisian dining
If you don’t have the time to nip over to Paris, a quick hop on the tube to Marylebone will bring you to Les 110 de Taillevent, the sister restaurant to two-michelin-star Le Taillevent, and twin of the Parisian brasserie of the same name. Since opening in 2015, it has prided itself on serving exceptional wines by the glass. And yes, you guessed it, a staggering 110 different wines are available to sample by the glass.
The food has been intrinsically weaved into the wine-tasting experience as each dish from the menu has been consciously paired with a choice of wines. However, don’t let the extensive list intimidate you. With an in-house sommelier on hand, there really is something for everyone and prices range from around £6 a glass to £35 (the Domaine Jean-Louis Chave Hermitage 2006, if you’re feeling a bit flush).
Once inside, you’re ushered into a dining room which oozes elegance while retaining a trendy, modern feel. There is an impressive bar area showing off all 110 bottles, dramatically illuminated to create a showy centrepiece. As we sat down we were greeted with a couple of delicious gougères and a glass of Pierre Moncuit champagne, which made for a very welcome start to the evening.
While ordering the food, we left the wine pairing in the capable hands of the sommelier who came over to ask us a few questions and if we had any preferences. The menu, as you can imagine, is composed of traditional French dishes incorporating an array of ripe ingredients and seasonal produce.
To start, we had the Orkney Scallops with black truffle, celery, apple and pistachio. The scallops were just hindering on sweet and slightly caramelised on the outside which is just how I like them. But it was the pistachio sauce that really blew me away as I didn’t stop until I’d mopped up every last drop. This was paired with a Château Ste Michelle Eroica Riesling.
We also opted for the Roasted Quail Tart with Jerusalem artichoke, goat’s curd and gentleman’s relish. With this one, it was all about ratio which just happened to be spot on. With just the right amount of crispy wafer-thin tart, silky smooth goat’s curd, salted gentleman’s relish and succulent quail in each mouthful, I can only describe it as heavenly. This was paired with a glass of Agnes Paquet Auxey-Duresses Blanc.
For mains, we tried the Salted Baked Lobster with chestnut, black truffle, baby spinach and parmesan. As the most expensive main on the menu, it certainly looked impressive. The dish was delicate, fragrant and subtle all round – a tasty main but by no means the star of the show. This was paired with a glass of Langhe Nebbiolo which was full-bodied and brimming with bold flavours.
We also had the Suckling Pig with cabbage, apple, rosemary and charcuterie sauce. This dish really made use of seasonal ingredients and it showed. Everything tasted that little bit sweeter, that little bit fresher and the meat was faultless. This was paired with a glass of Louis Latour Chassagne-Montrachet which went down very well.
For dessert, we had the Chocolate Hazelnut Crémeux with pomegranate and honeycomb. A special treat for chocolate lovers, this one was all about textures: smooth, velvety chocolate combined with crunchy honeycomb and silken pomegranate. This was paired with a glass of the Salvat Rivesaltes Ambre.
We also had the Blood Orange Posset. The tartness from the blood orange counteracted the overall sweetness and the marshmallow ice cream served as the perfect accompaniment. The whole combination was exquisite and one of the best desserts I’ve had in a long time. This was paired with a glass of Hungarian dessert wine, Tokaji Édes Szamorodni.
While it’s clear that this is a restaurant that takes its wine very seriously, it certainly didn’t mean the quality of the food suffered. Quite the contrary in fact. It’s also very clear that people don’t come to Les 110 de Taillevent on a whim, they choose to be here. So if you’re after an evening filled with impressive food and wine, with an unfaltering approach to detail, then you should probably choose to be here too.
★★★★★Food ▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮Drinks ▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮Service ▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮▮
Photos: Matthew Pull
To book a table at Les 110 de Taillevent, 16 Cavendish Square London W1G 9DD, call 020 3141 6016 or visit their website here.