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One Michelin Star, London 

Reviewed by Justine Murphy, CEO of mymuybueno – January 2017

Galvin at Windows has retained its Michelin star every year since it was awarded in 2009. It also has over thirty other awards to its name. Chef Patron Chris Galvin and his team have created seasonally inspired menus based around modern French haute cuisine. Situated on the 28th floor of the London Hilton on Park Lane, right in the heart of Mayfair, this one Michelin star restaurant has exceptional views across London. Of course, it was a typically grey London day on my visit, but it was a great view to behold all the same. The Head Chef is Joo Won, but he was not present during my visit. Jamie Shears was the chef on service.

The Á la Carte menu is not served on a Sunday. They have a nicely balanced Sunday Lunch menu instead and, to get a better feel for the restaurant and food, I selected four courses. Two starters, a main and a dessert.  

Opting as usual for anything that holds the chef’s name (which signifies that it is a dish the chef is proud to put their name to) I selected the Galvin Smoked Salmon, Beetroot, Horseradish and Dill to start.

I think I was slightly disappointed by the pile of smoked salmon. In my mind I had envisaged something more exciting coming together with all the components. Regardless, this was a very good dish, with a winning match of ingredients that always work in harmony. The beetroot was glazed and perfectly cooked, the horseradish cream had just the right bite, and a dill oil topped with caraway seeds worked well. It was a simple dish with not too much skill required, however the execution was good, and it was a nice, clean and delicious plate. The suggested Riesling was a very good pairing.

The horseradish cream had just the right bite, and a dill oil topped with caraway seeds worked well.

My next starter was the Scotch Beef Steak Tartare, Pickled Vegetables, Romesco, Caper, Grain Mustard Mayonnaise. This was beautiful and again a fairly simple dish, but it was flawless. The balance was spot on, just the right balance of sharp and sweet, and the toasted sourdough was very good. The confit egg was a delight and the sharpness and strength that the mustard brought cut across the richness precisely. I loved this dish, and once more, the pairing of the Pinot Noir was spot on.

Fillet of Gigha Halibut, Seared Scallops, Curried Lentils and Harissa, and a side of Tenderstem Broccoli, Almonds, and Sesame Oil. This consisted of a silky smooth pomme purée under a scallop, with a bed of lentils flecked through with little prawns. The curry worked. The halibut was a generous portion and perfectly cooked, as was the broccoli. It was a creamy, comforting, beautiful dish and very nice. Once more, credit to the sommelier for the Chardonnay pairing, which married nicely with the turbot. A cracking dish. I didn’t really need a side but I wanted to try it.

Silky smooth pomme purée under a scallop, with a bed of lentils flecked through with little prawns 

Caramelised Apple Tart, Frangipane and Madagascan Vanilla Ice Cream. This was a good dessert with a delicious puff pastry as buttery, light and crisp as it should be. A very delicious crème anglaise was poured across the top and a quenelle of vanilla ice cream sat on a pile of frangipane crumbs. These could have carried a stronger almond flavour than they did.

Petit Fours were handmade chocolate truffles with passion fruit, which were followed by some utterly amazing apple and blackberry marshmallows. If I hadn’t been so full I would have eaten more of them. I should have requested to take some away as they were so good – light and delicious. Credit to the pastry chef who made them.

Wine:
Best’s Great Western, Riesling, 2016
Leyda Reserva, Pinot Noir, Chile, 2015
La Crèma. Sonoma Coast, Chardonnay, 2014
Favourite Dish: The steak tartare – such a beautiful dish.
Napkin Fold: Yes.
Menu to take home: No.
Meal for two, including wine, water and service: £300.
Final Thought: This was a fabulous lunch, and I will be back to sample the À la Carte menu at a later date for certain. Each dish was beautifully executed and you can’t beat the location. This ticks every box for any occasion, from a family dinner to a business lunch to a romantic evening. It has a wonderfully relaxing setting, completely unpretentious, and excellent service with very attentive staff.

Galvin at Windows
Address: London Hilton on Park Lane, 22 Park Lane, Mayfair, London W1K 1BE
Telephone: + 44 (0) 20 7208 4021
Hours: Monday – Friday (including bank holidays)
Lunch: 12pm – 2.30pm, Saturday
Lunch: Closed.  Sunday: 11.45am – 3pm
Dinner: 6pm – 10pm Monday to Wednesday, 6pm-10.30pm Thursday-Saturday. Sunday: Closed.
Website: http://www.galvinatwindows.com