Sunday, July 28, 2013

Breathing fresh air into Fifteen [CLOSED]

Cured Middlewhite Pork and Pickled Fennel

Crispy Quail, Devil Salt and Mushroom Ketchup

Asparagus, Hen's Egg and Shaved Truffle

Breads, Farmhouse Butter and Chicken Butter

A couple of months back, I was asked if I wanted to come try out Fifteens new menu. New head chef, new place, new approach to their food. Away went the "Italian" focused menu, and in came something with a much more British focus, unsurprising given that head chef John Rotherham's previous employment was at none other than the sadly now defunct St John Hotel.

Each dish embraces no more than a few ingredients, used intelligently together to highlight the flavours of the other. With lots of the very much sharing focused menu under ten pounds, we kind of went wild. Asparagus came draped with a perfect fried egg and shavings of truffles, slivers of fatty middlewhite pork lifted by pickled fennel and creamy pink fir potatoes scattered with rich Lincolnshire Poacher and wild garlic.

Best of all, a crispy fried quail, battered in a light crust the Colonel could only dream of, served simply with a few blobs of umami packed mushroom ketchup. And chicken butter! Wow, seriously, all butter should be whipped with chicken fat and laced with crisp fried skin. As you can imagine, I rather enjoyed it all.

The new Fifteen may not be that new any more, but if the food is like it was when I visited a few months back, you'll be experiencing new fantastic flavour combinations from a restaurant with a new lease of life. Leave any preconceptions at the door and go.

Fifteen - 15 Westland Place, London N1 7LP

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