- Visit Date: 9th September 2022
- Restaurant: Allegra
- Address: The Stratford, 20 International Way, London E20 1FD
I have been wanting to come to Allegra for such a long time. A friend of mine, Chef Phil Clark over in New Zealand, used to work with Patrick and had been nudging me to get across to visit him for a while. I have been to the same location before, when they had a burger pop up just after lockdown.
It is a mission to get to, especially for myself coming via taxi from West London, but it is so very worthy of the journey. It is a slightly different location to normal, being in a high-rise building, but I loved the fact there is a private lift which takes you straight up to the seventh floor. The doors open and you enter a beautiful and elegant space with plenty of natural light.
Kicking off the meal with the snacks, my goodness, they were delicious. Their signature fried chicken was delightful, and I only wished I had a bucket of it. The mackerel tart was beautiful with such delicate flavours, and the choux bun which I thought may have been rich, wasn’t, just a perfect balance of pastry with a super light liver parfait inside.
The velouté was lovely, I missed not having bread with it, as happily would have mopped up the bowl, it then came out after. I don’t usually eat much bread, but once I started with Patrick’s soda bread, I couldn’t stop, it was so moreish.
The Roasted Orkney Scallop brushed with chicken sauce was excellent, cooked perfectly and worked nicely with the barbecued sweetcorn and a fresh burst of lime.
Anjou pigeon, aged for nine days on roasted hay, this dish completely blew me away, with the most exceptional beetroot and pecan mole, with an insane depth of flavour, and then the leg, which had been fried and finished with salt and pepper, and a sour cream to dip into. I did have to request a finger bowl, this should have come when giving you something to eat with your hands in such a way, also it was cold water not hot.
The Scottish cod, rolled and stuffed with a lobster farce, pickled and smoked carrot, was fantastic, with a gorgeous shellfish sauce with lemongrass and ginger. I really enjoyed this dish.
The Welsh lamb was also just so delicious, aged in-house for a week and roasted on the bone. Fed on its mother’s milk for longer than normal, it had really exceptional flavour, and served with a very good faggot too.
A fab pre dessert with olive oil, which I adored, followed by the chocolate with a fig leaf caramel and ice cream, which was sterling and the fig leaf notes provided a good balance with the richness of the chocolate.
Followed by a whole tray of madeleines, which I asked for a box to take them home for my boys where they were very well received. I enjoyed one, and perhaps a cheeky one on the long journey home too.
I loved it all. Cherry was incredible with her attentive service and knowledge, and clear love of Allegra. And the wine pairing from Seyit was excellent, extra points for convincing me to try a dessert wine I may like, and for the first time ever, I did, because it tasted more like a cold fizzy ribena.
These guys are doing such great things. Cherry gave me a little tour outside of the rooftop gardens where they’re growing all their own herbs. Patrick is super talented and I can’t wait to return again, as well as checking out their new restaurant coming soon in St Pancras Renaissance Hotel where Charlie, the current sous here at Allegra, will be head chef with Patrick going between the two. Exciting times ahead.
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