It’s the emotion which keeps this whole blogging schtick chugging along the tracks.
I read about a delicious meal that someone else has eaten and then can’t bear the thought of not having it myself. So, I promptly book a table or order a takeaway.
In the case of London’s Quality Chop House, it’s Mrs G who is the agitator in chief. On a couple of work trips she’s had solo dinners at this modern British institution and made me feel thoroughly jealous about the heaving bowls of fried potatoes that I’ve missed out on.
So, as they’re now offering feasting menus and steak nights for two people with nationwide delivery, an order was always going to be inevitable.
£120 buys you a four course meal consisting of ten individual dishes. It’s a lot of food and I’d be mightily impressed if anyone could manage it in a single sitting. We spread it out over two evenings and were nicely full both times.
As expected, everything is beautifully boxed up and accompanied by clear instructions, with most dishes just taking a few minutes to plate up.
A bowl of tip top salted marcona almonds were a lovely snack with a glass of fizz to kick off the meal.
A coarse terrine was loaded with a bevy of meats; salty bacon, mangalitza pork, tender duck and the offaly twang of chicken liver were flecked with sweet apricots. A light and mustardy pickle of crunchy green beans was a lovely foil.
Smoked cods' roe was taramasalata royalty. Super creamy with an indulgent wobble, it was topped with a dusting of salty and savoury cured egg yolk.
A decent-ish loaf of house sourdough was fairly dense. Once you've had a loaf of Ty Melin’s sourdough, it's very difficult for anything else to pass muster.
A hugely meaty venison ragu with long cooked caramelised onions was accompanied by cavatelli pasta. Al dente yet with a comforting heft, they reminded me of a gnocchi-pasta hybrid. Orange fragranced toasted breadcrumbs and parmesan shavings completed the excellent dish.
Onto the main event, and a pair of stupidly tender Desperate Dan proportioned beef cheeks were bathed in a glossy meat gravy, aromatic with the savoury funk of truffle. Savoury, earthy roasted artichoke puree added a further dimension.
Tender roast caramelised hispi cabbage was liberally basted with butter.
Quality Chop's confit potatoes have spawned a thousand imitations and I can see why. Soft layers of shaved potato are confited in duck fat, pressed overnight and then deep fried until golden brown - the combination of tender interior and gnarly exterior is as good as potatoes get. A drizzle of tangy mustard dressing balanced the richness nicely.
For pud, sweet yet tart rhubarb pieces with a bit of bite were layered with pieces of soft pistachio, blood orange and olive oil cake, the crunch of a caramelised seeds and oats, and a silky, slightly cucumbery borage honey custard.
Next level silky and buttery fudge with chunks of white chocolate and the occasional flake of salt rounded off the meal.
We really enjoyed our feast from the Quality Chop House. The only issue, my Quality Chop FOMO is now even worse so I'll have to visit the restaurant soon.
Address - The Quality Chop House, 88-94 Farringdon Rd, Farringdon, London EC1R 3EA
Telephone - 020 7278 1452