When I first started this blog it was because I wanted to share my most wonderful food discoveries and pass on recommendations. I didn’t want to be a food critic, I wanted to write about amazing food and experiences. If I don’t come away from a meal thinking “Wowsers” and telling every other person that they really must try it, then it won’t make the cut. If you want to read about dry beef, bad service and cold restaurants, there’s plenty of other food blogs out there that will satisfy your needs. This is a place to revel in the happiness that food can bring, that’s what Every Meal Matters is all about – I really do think that everything you eat should be amazing!
In the last few weeks I’ve eaten at a number of decent places (Crysan, Scotts, Duck & Waffle, Disco Bistro, Wishbone … ) but Hedone stuck out like a sore thumb because it gave me that feeling. I wanted to tell everyone about it and immediately started to plan a reason to go back. Since our meal I’ve thought fondly of the delicious dishes I ate, again and again. In short, Hedone is exactly the reason that I write this blog. I absolutely bloody loved it!!
Every single thing that I put in my mouth was delicious and I do not use that word lightly. When I say delicious I mean that it made me want to close my eyes and melt, torn between wanting to savour every mouthful and gobble the whole thing down. You know that happy, contented feeling that only good food or great big cuddles can bring. That is what delicious means to me and this entire meal was delicious!
I could tell you about the fact that the chef is an ex lawyer and food blogger, the long treck over to Chiswick, the open kitchen and relaxed restaurant or the excellent value set lunch but what I really want to tell you about is the food.
Let’s start with the oysters. I am not a big oyster fan. If I’m honest I’ve never really had an oyster that I’ve loved, I usually have one then give the rest to Mr E. Until I tried these bad boys that is. Oh my giddy aunt – they were sensational. They were poached, which I much preferred to the usual raw option and served in immaculately cleaned shells with a crisp apple sauce and tangy shallots. The flavour was both fresh and delicate. The salty sea flavour was dominant, but with the accompaniments it was like a happy explosion in my mouth.
If you go to Hedone I would most definitely recommend the oysters.
Poached Irish rock oysters, Granny Smiths, shallots
The langoustine were also sensational. Very simple, flame grilled with a salty seaweed butter brushed on top. The meat was really sweet and succulent. The only shame was that you didn’t get more!
Flame grilled Scottish langoustine, nori butter
We went for the a la carte menu but as we are very greedy people we wanted to try more than 3 dishes each and so we asked if we could have a fish course too. Our lovely waitress was more than happy to oblige and asked the chef to prepare us a half portion of the turbot bouillabaisse each. She explained that it wasn’t a traditional bouillabaisse but a dish using the same flavour combinations.
It was perfect and the perfect size too. Such a nice thought to offer us a half portion each. The smoked potatoes and fennel complimented the turbot perfectly without stealing the show. I loved this dish!
Bouillabaisse of Dorest wild turbot, smoked potatoes, fennel, dried Kalamata
On to mains and Mr E chose the lamb (on the basis that we would swap plates at half time). This was probably the least exciting of the dishes we ate but it was still fabulous. Perfectly cooked lamb with sweet smoky aubergine and bitter endive. I was not at all sad when plate swapping time arrived.
Roasted rack of Cumbrian salt marsh lamb, smoked aubergine puree, miso and walnutt glazed endive
My choice was the beef. When you see the words 72 hours slow cooked, it really is hard to resist! It totally lived up to expectations, strong robust flavours, delicate juicy beef and tasty interesting accompaniments.
72 hours slow cooked short rib of Black Angus beef, Dauphinois mousseline, Chantenay carrots, caramelised echalion
As everything had been so wonderful, including all the extras that I haven’t mentioned such as the canapés, the bread and the pre-starter, there was absolutely no way we we missing out on pudding.
We had a tasty little pre-dessert and then on to the main event. The millefeuille served with caramel ice cream was absolute perfection. I would never order a fruit based dessert if something chocolate based is on offer but this totally blew me away.
We also ordered a glass of ice cider to go with it. It was a total revelation, a cross between dessert wine and a sweet cider. Something I will most certainly be on the look out for in future!
Cox apple millefeuille, caramel ice cream
The chocolate dessert didn’t let us down earthier. Oh it was luscious. Rich, smooth and moreish. I think it lasted about 30 seconds!
Warm chocolate, powdered raspberry, Madagascar vanilla ice cream
Coffees and petit fours rounded off the meal nicely and what a meal it was. An absolute 10/10.