Ever since visiting Tom Aikens restaurant in Chelsea we became big fans of his. When we found out he would be cooking during our visit to The Cube we were super excited.
We’ve been to The Cube twice before (Daniel Clifford and the Casamia boys cooked on our previous visits) and we’ve absolutely fallen in love with the place – it’s quite hard not to. For those of you who are unfamiliar with it, The Cube by Electrolux (the kitchen appliance people) is a pop up restaurant on the roof of the Royal Festival Hall. Michelin starred chefs take up temporary residencies to cook for 16 diners at a time at one long table with an open plan kitchen. What makes it so great is you’re encouraged to get up and watch the food being prepared and ask lots of questions – which we love doing!
We started with champagne on the balcony – the view is simply wonderful. There really is nothing more enjoyable. Some canapés followed – the crispy beetroot meringues with foie gras, crispy polenta with black olive and red pepper tuiles looked very pretty and were all delicious. What a good start.
a fight a slight altercation with some men in suits who wanted to sit in the same seats as us – some homemade bread was served. Both the brown and the sourdough roll were devoured with delight. The almost mousse-like salted butter and the earthy mushroom butter were absolutely spot on too.
For our first course we were served confit salmon, jasmine, apple and vanilla. The dish looked stunning and very elegant. The delicate salmon and the apple worked together perfectly, making for a fresh tasting and summery starter. The sweet vanilla added an unusual flavour combination but it worked really well.
Our second course was smoked venison, horseradish and smoked beetroot. The venison came in tartare form (raw) and the quality was sublime. The horseradish had been made into ice cold snow which was zingy and refreshing – freezing cold horseradish really works! The smokiness from the venison and the beetroot was present but it didn’t overpower the meat one bit – it was balanced very cleverly.
Our third course was smoked, baked and salted celeriac. This was pleasant but it was actually my least favourite course. I like celeriac don’t get me wrong, but it never particularly excites me and I wasn’t particularly excited eating this. I felt the smokiness overpowered everything and I lost the flavour of the celeriac altogether.
Our fourth course was roast scallop, pineapple and pork belly. Scallop and pork belly – what could be better? This was absolutely divine, the mini square of pork belly was perfectly cooked and the scallop was soft, which all contrasted the sweet tangy pineapple rather wonderfully. Tom fried the scallops on one side before baking them in the oven – they were so soft and succulent they were heavenly.
Our fifth course of lamb loin, dried black olive and baked onion had a small thin sheet of cheesy pasta and a sprinkling of crunchy lamb bolognese which all tasted like a posh lasagne. The lamb loin was a tender chunk of meat that was served perfectly pink – just how it should be (Dad, if you’re reading this, lamb shouldn’t be dry and grey!)
Pudding was described on the menu as chocolate and lemongrass dessert – there was plenty of chocolate but neither of us could detect any lemongrass. That aside, the chocolate fondant was gooey and the sauce around it was creamy – this dessert was a rich, indulgent, chocolatey delight. I kept letting out rather loud “mmm’s” with every mouthful. God it was good!
To accompany our coffee we were served some olive oil jelly sweets and some mini chocolate bars which looked very pretty.
Service, as we experienced on our previous visits, was absolutely faultless. The waiters were chatty and friendly which really adds to the whole experience.
The food that Tom cooked was attractive and delicious – and we felt very lucky to be able to try his cooking in the environment of The Cube. Whilst standing at the pass, me and my gentleman companion gushed like two silly schoolgirls telling him how much we’d enjoyed our lunch and how much we liked his restaurant. I blame that on the copious amounts of wine we were served with each course (which were perfectly matched with the food). Anyhow, we are big fans of his and we had a lovely lunch.
I dined as a guest of the restaurant.