Wednesday, 17 December 2008
140 Park Lane Restaurant and Bar (Marriott Hotel by Marble Arch)
The Christmas shopping has begun. People all over Oxford St. are rushing around with determined looks on their faces, each one eager to get one bargain over another shopper. Not difficult considering how most of the shops are offering discounts of 20% or more. Some of these shops are even discounting new lines of items. We were in the Bond St., Marble Arch bit of town on Friday, and based on a friend’s recommendation, we decided to have dinner at the restaurant in Marriott Hotel.
I’ve been past this place a few times, but with all things grand, it never occurred to me to actually dine in there. Now that Toptable are having a 50% discount offer here (on all food ordered, excluding drinks or service charge), meagre-spenders like me have the opportunity to step foot in a restaurant like this.
The menu is small, just one A4 sheet of cream-coloured paper.
Someone said on a food programme that in order to show that you’re experienced in dining out (and don’t eat only out of cans), when in a restaurant, you should only mention the type of meat when ordering, like, ‘Can I have the chicken please, with a side of mash.’
You should not say ‘Can I have the lemon grass poached chicken with a side of Oriental-style greens with a rocket mash, please’. I suppose this doesn’t apply in all restaurants, for example, KFC.
So many glasses, and we only ordered water.
The bread basket that came free (of charge). It was OK, not as tasty as what you’d imagine from looking at the picture.
We ordered the steak (£20, half price to £10 with a £5 supplementary charge for steaks) and my dining companion ordered this medium rare. From what I could tell, it was nicely pink, but I didn’t try it so I can’t comment on the taste.
This is the grilled pork, which looked alot like lamb to us, but I tried this and it was pork. Nicely cooked, huge portions and definitely the most worth it of all the main dishes ordered. The sauce was good, but the pork was slightly over-done, so while it was OK for the first bite, I imagine my dining companion probably got quite tired of chewing it after a while.
This was what I ordered, the chicken (posh, see?). It was the lemongrass poached chicken, and from the taste, it was probably poached too long as it was chewy. Thing is, it’s difficult to have tender chicken if you’re having the meaty bits, so I guess, it was OK. The sauce that came with it was done in a Thai style, and the greens accompanying it was done brilliantly, just crunchy enough and green enough.
Highlight of the meal
Now, you could put it down to a lack of posh preferences, or just because I was under the weather, but the mash potato was the highlight of the meal, the evening in fact. It was described as mash potato with rocket, but I couldn’t taste the rocket (again, could be due to the fact that I can’t taste much at all with the sniffles). The texture was creamy, and just amazingly good.
So much so that I had this little pot in front of me throughout the dinner, and held it everytime someone looked like they were reaching for it. Eventually, I finished the entire pot of mash potato, and wanted more.
The other side dishes ordered were wedges (those things that look like chicken pieces), roasted vegetables (didn’t try them, was busy eating mash) and spinach with something (didn’t try them, was busy eating mash).
Overall, with the discount, it was about £15 a person, reasonable considering it was in the hotel, and that we had more sides than main dishes.