This past week, I had the pleasure of attending the Transatlantic Tables Open Table dinner at The Grain Store in King’s Cross. This dinner was special in that on the very same day, a blogger dinner took place at Hundred Acres restaurant in New York City, as a way to celebrate the phenomenal food scenes in both cities and for new and old friends to come together and bond over a mutual appreciation of great food.
The Grain Store is a beautiful restaurant in King’s Cross headed up by the talented Chef Bruno Loubet, who has created an eclectic menu inspired by his travels around the world with a focus on sustainability. The decor is rustic and features one of the biggest open plan kitchens I’ve ever seen. I find it fascinating to be able to take a peek inside the kitchen to see what they’re making.
When we arrived, we all mingled over delicious canapés and Death in Venice cocktails, made with Campari, grapefruit bitters topped with prosecco and orange twists. It was great to finally meet some bloggers who I feel like I’ve known for ages just through talking over twitter, Instagram and email. It was so nice to be able to put faces to the names and properly catch up.
Before sitting down for dinner, we listened to Chef Loubet discuss what inspires him to cook and he walked us through a bit about the menu for the evening, which combined various elements that Hundred Acres restaurant in New York City uses (I saw on Instagram that at their dinner, they incorporated black pudding as an ode to England in their menu).
Placed along the the tables were cards with little quotes about what makes the New York dining scene special from bloggers across the pond. It was quite cool to read what inspires New Yorker’s about the food scene over there, and I found that there were quite a few similarities to London. Having been to New York quite a few times, I’d say the diversity of cuisine in both cities is fantastic and while I may be in the minority on this viewpoint, I feel as though London has caught up with if not surpassed New York in many ways, but i’m up for debate!
Our first course was Atlantic Kitchen Seaside toast with seaweed butter, oyster leaves, borage leaves, flower, pickled samphire and cucumber served on potato bread. A light and delicious starter that whet our appetites for what was to come. I really enjoyed the noodles as they were quite an unexpected pairing with the toast and I thought worked really well together.
Our second course included Organic Vegetables Ravioli in a delicious tomato consume with herbs oil. Each individual ravioli was made with a different vegetable including beet, butternut squash, spinach and herb, tomato carrots and peppers. My favourite were the peppers, but I though the entire dish was warming and hearty without being overly heavy. The tomato consume was aromatic and full of flavour, I finished it off with a spoon.
For our final course before dessert, we indulged in Raspberry Vinegar Pickled Red Vegetables, Grilled Squash, Seared Venison Filet with fermented corn brioche, paired perfectly with Au Bon Climat Pinor Noir from Santa Maria California. (California wines are my favourite). The dish was full of flavour and the venison was cooked to perfection. Venison is one of my favourite meats (especially Mac & Wild’s in Fitzrovia), and this dish had me going back bite after bite.
The star of the evening was this incredible Urban Honey Roasted Peach Melba dessert that was both sweet and tart. It had a beautiful, intricate layer of sugar lattice on top that you had to break through to get to the ice cream. It was almost too pretty to eat (almost). I broke apart the melba and swirled it into the ice cream and took a bite. We all had a laugh digging out the peach, but it was worth it in the end for such a great tasting dessert.
It was a really lovely evening and so nice to meet some new friends and get to know each other better over a stand out meal around the table. I love how eclectic the London food scene is and it’s always awesome when you meet people who share the same enthusiasm for the industry, and equally as cool to share the experience with fellow foodies across the pond.
I was a guest on behalf of Open Table for the #ConnectedbyOT dinner.
The Grain Store | Granary Square | 1-3 Stable St | London | N1C 4AB | Book Now via OpenTable