We arrived slightly early so had a drink at the bar - a g&t for me (obviously) and a Ricard for Pascal which was served beautifully (even better than they do in France).
Normally when the sun is out we are desperate to sit outside with some rose but today being inside with air conditioning was a blessing.
We were shown to our table and despite our intentions to only have one starter to share and then a main each, once we opened the menu, we knew we couldn't be "good"! (Good food is better than a good bikini body)!
The menu is my idea of Heaven - french but with burgers. Daniel Boulud is famous for his super expensive burger that he sells in his New York restaurant…something I definitely need to try one day!! I literally wanted everything on the menu - starters range from charcuterie platters, pates, sausages, salads, snails….we went for 3 starters to share. I chose the pate grand-pere which I had had before - coarse pate, foie gras, pork and truffle. Even though it had been two years, it was still as amazing as I remembered. I didn't even eat the toast with it, it was enough on it's own….I actually wished I wasn't sharing!
Pascal chose the boudin blanc sausage with truffled mash potato and apple. I haven't had boudin blanc before and I didn't want to know exactly what was in it - it tasted delicious and the truffle mash was sublime - I could have eaten a mountain of it.
Lyon in France is famous for it's food and restaurants and so Pascal said we also had to have the sausage Lyonnais in brioche with pistachio & truffle. It wouldn't have been my choice but I am pleased with Pascal's decision as it was amazing - it put the humble pork pie to shame!
Wow - a fantastic start to a meal! Choosing a main was difficult as I adore the mussels they do here and their croque monsieur but we decided to share a couple of burgers. We went for a Frenchie which was a beef patty with confit pork belly, rocket, dijon, tomato compote and a morbid cheese peppered bun. Plus a Piggie (it had my name all over it) which was a beef patty with barbecue pulled pork, green chilli mayonnaise, bibb lettuce, red cabbage slaw and a cheddar bun. We ordered some fries and were tempted by more truffle mash but I didn't want to explode.
Both burgers were great - really juicy, soft buns and plenty of filling. The pulled pork was outstanding. The true test of the fact it was a good burger was that I didn't notice the lack of cheese until the very end. Pascal thought the piggie had a bit of a kick to it but I was so obsessed by the red cabbage slaw I didn't notice. The fries were fab but we barely touched them as we were stuffed.
A great lunch and thankfully Pascal agreed….yes it is expensive (especially the wine) but the food is great and the service impeccable. In fact I have already organised my birthday lunch there for 2015!!
Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park
Tel: 020 72013899