So my SO and I went last night to Jamie Kennedy Restaurant for our first time. What a wonderful experience!
We were the first to arrive at the restaurant and were excitedly told by the staff that we got to be the "Guinea Pigs" for the new winter menu.
The first thing that impresed me was when my SO ordered wine he admitted he did not know what to have. After asking some simple questions our server sent over the Sommalier who recommended a red that he thought would go well with his main (Quail). I gather that it was a perfect match so full marks there!
The amuse was seared cuttlefish on top of a tomato salsa of some type. Really a nice way to start!
For the apps I had the Crab, Avocado and Blood Orange salad. Quite nice, the combination of flavours was actually really interesting. SO had the Venison Carpaccio and advised that it was really nice and lean without too strong of a gamey flavour.
The bread that came with the meal was homemade and had both a regular (wonderfully dense!) white bread and a flatbread. It also came with a spread that I beleive was carrot and squash. I realize there has been some controversy over the fact that at the Wine Bar people need to pay for bread. I would in a heartbeat!
Mains were interesting. I have the braised lamb (described as clear braised lamb) with winter root veg and barley. I had it in my mind that the dish would be really heavy but ended up being closer to a clear soup. Despite that I was plesantly surprised by all of the wonderful flavours! SO had the flat quail which he really enjoyed with the help of the wine. He joked at one point that her would hate to try making it himself since he knew he would never be able to do such a good job.
Desserts were the highlight. After asking about the odd sounding "Snowballs Chance" we were told it was something that the server had not yet served but gave us a full description of Coconut ice cream with a sabayon which was heated to caramelize the top. All of this was served on a salsa (of sorts) of different tropical fruits. In a word, it was amazing. My SO (who ordered it) mentioned that it remined him of his trip to the Cook Islands both in terms of the smell and the taste. My Profiteleroles (sp!) with Chestnut puree and chocolate sauce was not as exotic but was truly excellent.
Overall a very pleasant experience. The service was excellent, very enthusiastic, knowledgable and friendly. I found that the dishes were either the sort of thing that reminded you of winter (and cozying up to a fire) or of somewhere tropical and warm. Sort of a neat combination
Later (when it got busier) I noticed Jamie Kennedy making the rounds and he briefly stopped at our table just to make sure everything was good.
Cost was by far less than I had expected for a three course meal(granted only one of us had wine)A worthy experience overall.