Walking into Gordon Ramsay’s BSK, it’s hard to miss the city boys and gals. Though that might not be everyone’s cup of tea, it certainly makes for a beautiful space. High ceilings, well lit, walls covered in wine.
I’m here to try the allotment menu; a concept that celebrates the British summer and the goodies that come with it. Plants and herbs are growing around me – from the ceiling, the tables… there’s even a temporary greenhouse – where two diners can enjoy a (kind-of) romantic meal.
The tomato-themed 5 course meal kicks off with a tomato consomme served with a gin and tonic granita. As well as looking like a bowl of ‘edible summer’, the natural, clean, sweet tomato flavour continues to please until the last spoonful and the G&T granita adds a slight bitterness.
The second course is a cured salmon dish. As with pretty much all of the dishes, it certainly looks the part as its placed down in front of me. Again this dish is clean and light; the kind you’d be happy to go on for a while longer. The gin-cured salmon perhaps misses the boozy kick that the menu promises but all in all it’s a pleasant eat.
Course three is a tartare I’m never going to forget. The chef prepares a tomato tartare table-side that looks finer than any tartare I’ve seen before. He tops it with what looks like an egg yolk which is in fact made purely from tomato and some ‘molecular wizardry’ – his words not mine. The whole thing is very clever indeed.
The main event is steak with Bloody Mary spiced chips (more like mini croquettes) and a whole beef tomato filled with a sweet, bernaise-like sauce called Choron. The spicing around the chips is far too overpowering; and actually a little unpleasant – a bit like dipping a wet chip into a pot of smoked paprika. The meat lacks flavour which is a shame.
The accompanying tomato is definitely the main attraction here. It’s fat, sweet and juicy and is partnered perfectly with the sauce. It almost didn’t need the meat.
For pud, a brûlée constructed of non-brûlée ingredients: tomato, basil almond and rosemary. It was, again, light and befitting of any summer meal. Sweet and nutty flavours – balanced well by a chef who knows exactly what they’re doing.
Overall – my dining experience is very good. The food (for the most part) is delicious and exciting; and I can feel ‘the allotment’ vibe at every moment. I only wish I could be seated away from the city crowds congregating for their post-work beers. A proper dining room would match this menu a treat.
Would we go back? Yes
We dined as guests of the restaurant