It’s a tough job to match one of the best views of London with a menu that stands up on it’s own two feet. Nestled in a rather brutalist shell, when we were invited to the Guoman hotel chain’s Tower Hotel brasserie to try the new “Goanut” we weren’t sure what to expect. It was delicious. And the view was as beautiful as it could be for this permatourist..
Disclaimer: We were invited guests of the Tower Hotel Brasserie, but my (many) opinions are only ever my own, and I would never recommend anywhere that I wouldn’t happily visit, and revisit on my own dime.
The international Foodie news has been abuzz of late with the latest patisserie concoctions; New York Chef Dominique Ansel’s “Cronut”, a hybrid of croissant-doughnut hybrid that has New Yorkers queueing for hours in the cold, the David and Goliath struggle of Bea’s of Bloomsbury and Starbucks trying to claim trademarking of the “Duffin” a marriage of doughnuts and muffins, and the latest metamorphosis of gourmet Eclairs in Paris.
Amuse Bouche/ Goat’s Cheese Doughnuts
Caramel Mousse, Beetroot Compote, Caramelised Pecans, Cress Lettuce
The Goanut, a savoury twist on patisserie, is the brainchild of Guoman’s executive chef, Christian Rozsenich and his passionate team and is a savoury riff on the traditional doughnut. Two goats cheese balls, one with a soft sweet doughnut texture contains a delicate goat cheese and mascarpone centre, and the other has a stronger goats cheese flavour with a crunchier shell. They are fun and very playful – the texture is a really interesting talking point, and has been counterpointed with a salted caramel mousse, marinated beetroot and crunchy maple coated pecan nuts.
Braised Fennel, Coconut Mash, Malibu Butter
Delicately pan-fried, the scallops were simply divine. It was the first time Mr Kiwi has ever tried scallops, and he was very lucky as they were the best I’ve ever sampled whilst living in London. And it’s tough to please this Kiwi girl when it comes to seafood. The accompaniments were prefectly light and matched to the scallops without overwelming them with big flavour. The duck was scrummy, and brioche was delightful, though I possibly could have done with something to slightly sharper to pop, matching the richness of the duck.
Mains/ Barbary Duck Breast
Slow Roast Red Cabbage, Almond Dumplings, Clementine Foam
Baked Broccoli & Montgomery Cheddar Bonbons
Truffled Cauliflower Gratin, Sweet Pepper Veloute, Wild Mushrooms
If there is an overriding theme to the Restaurant menu, it’s simple, good food (with a slight Bavarian twist owing to the strong influence of Austrian chefs in the team) and flavour combinations that interest the palate but don’t confuse them by being conflicting and brash.
The combination of beautifully cooked duck, red cabbage and clementine is a nice twist on orange and duck, and the dumplings were delicious. A surprise for us was Mr Kiwi’s vegetarian Baked Broccoli & Montgomery Cheddar Bonbons. Now, Mr Kiwi is a die-hard meat-eating Englishman but his foray into the vegetarian world was scrumptious – and it’s hard to find a decent vegetarian main that can satisfy as well as a meaty one, whilst still being fun, tasty and playful. This definitely ticked the boxes.
Dessert/White Chocolate Tiramisu
Kahlua Infused Biscuits, Summer Berries
Feeling very, very full, we were talked into trying our waiters favourite dessert; the White Chocolate Tisamisu. It’s a perfect sharer – rich, delicious and a perfect way to end a delicious meal. The menus will be changed over the New Year to reflect the new season, but I hope that the White Chocolate Tiramisu makes the cut.
(Kind courtesy of the hotel)
The service was great – attentive without being overwelming (and the staff are big fans of the dessert menu which is always nice to see, instead of just recommending the most expensive dish). We will definitely be back for a nice celebration meal and it will possibly our new summer drink venue. And those scallops, oh those scallops. For further details, prices and the menu, check out their website.