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Dabbous, London

Anyone been yet?

I saw a good review in Time Out a few week's back, and my boss liked it so much he rang to tell me to go!

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  1. Long wait for tables need to book far in advance.

    1. I have a table booked for next week. I'l report back!

      1. Giles Coren's review on Saturday was stellar; I hadn't been tempted until then. No tables for at least 8 weeks, according to opentable!

        5 Replies
        1. re: gembellina

          That's why my boss rang me - to tell me to book quick after Coren's review.

          1. re: greedygirl

            Best strategy in this scenario is to wait several months. With the jump in demand, it's going to be difficult for even the best kitchens to deal with a sudden scale up while maintaining quality. But if you *really* have to go, I would try calling early evenings to check for cancellations.

            1. re: limster

              Yes 5/5 from Fay Maschler and a stellar review from Giles and it was already booked out until June for dinners.

              It does look awesome, no harm in letting it bed in though.

              1. re: ManInTransit

                I wanted to squeeze it in before we move abroad but it might have to wait for a trip back. Looking forward to abby d's review!

          2. I may be the only one in this town who doesnt "get it". The food was very good (not stellar or mind blowing if you have been to similar restaurants (eg pollen street social). But the room and noise from the bar downstairs make the experience much less pleasant than it otherwise would have been.
            Good pricing though and I wish them well.

            2 Replies
            1. re: olly78

              Thanks for the info -- great to be able to look pass all the media hype for some firsthand info, and definitely looking forward to more info from abby d.

              Could you share more about what you had, along with the pros and cons of the food? Also, if you've been to Texture previously, how does it compare?

              I felt the same way about Pollen Street Social -- a ton of hype -- their PR folks did a great job and deserved every penny. But when it came down to it, the food was merely good to very good (and very reasonably priced for Mayfair), with equal flashes of brilliance and spots of disappointment.

              I guess that's fairly standard when a high budget restaurant opens -- a coordinated PR effort, critics who are known get feted, leading to glowing reports in the media all at once if the restaurant is at least competent, and the people who select restaurants based on the media's recommendation all rush to sample next shiny new thing.

              1. re: limster

                I've managed to get a lunch reservation for 3 weeks time as an early Bday pressie. Perhaps the hype over it will have simmered a little by then, but will try to write up about it

            2. Went tonight for dinner and everything was uniformly excellent. From the fennel salad to the barbecued iberian pork, everything was inventive while still delicious. Wine pairings were spot on as well. An excellent evening, particularly at this price point. Staff was attentive and chef was gracious as well.

              1. so, we went, we ate, I wasn’t blown away but did have a nice time.

                we had the tasting menu and the first two items – English asparagus with rapeseed oil mayo, meadowsweet and hazelnuts; mixed alliums in a chilled infusion with basil oil – were wonderful; my favourites of the meal.

                the mayonnaise had a wonderful depth of flavour which, with the earthiness of the hazelnuts and the meadowsweet just worked so well with the fat spears of asparagus.

                the alliums in a chilled broth were also fabulous – really light and fresh tasting; it was amazing to taste how different the red and white onions were and the basil oil added a lovely springlike freshness.

                next up was the infamous coddled egg which I passed on and had a squid dish from the alc instead. the egg was good with a lovely smokiness but you do have to be an egg fan – I’m kind of surprised how it has thrilled people to the extent that it has. I can’t remember anything about my squid dish (didn’t take a picture of the alc menu) other than the fact it was a bit chewy. I vaguely remember it being in a broth with crunchy wheat grains…

                lovely charred salmon with elderflower, spring onions and almonds. the fish was very delicately cooked and yet had a smokey flavour to it. and I love the use of nuts, again, to add texture.

                another much-praised dish – bbq’d iberico pork with acorn praline, turnip tops and apple vinegar. aka posh pork satay. I did like the slightly pickled turnip tops which cut through the richness of the flavours really well but there weren’t many so I only managed about half of my dish as the pork/praline was a bit cloying for me.

                iced lovage sorbet and then chocolate and hazelnut oil ganache, basil moss and sheep’s milk icecream. lovely textures here, especially the basil moss which really did look like lush plump moss. the flavours were again a bit monotone for me – it reminded me of the damian allsopp basil ganache chocolates and tbh I’d have been as happy eating one of those. so again, I only ate about half as I got bored of the flavours.

                it’s interesting food (though not unique in london, as noted above), reasonably good value and I like the setting. I would go back but I won’t rush there.

                they were fully booked but as we were finishing a couple got a walk-in table so that might be worth a try if people are in the area and fancy trying the food.