A few days ago, Trudy and I were sitting at the two-seater Kitchen Table – interacting with chefs, waiters and sommeliers at Restaurant Konstantin Filippou in Vienna – and loving it. An eight-course tasting with brilliant Austrian wines – and we couldn’t help but pile right in – living in the now – and the now was all about food, history, produce, trends, wines. And we got to talking about how many good times we have over food – and how many stories start in restaurants, cafes and bars.
Trudy suggested we add some structured storytelling to our food experiences – rather than just ad-hoc scribblings – see recent posts Le Tour de Yorkshire, A Star is Born (II).
So here we go – the launch of Foodie Friday. Every Friday I’ll post something Food / Foodie related.
The last few days found us in:
- Scotts in Mayfair – one of my all-time favourites. Richard Caring owned nowadays, London’s fifth oldest restaurant, originally opened by fishmonger John Scott as an Oyster warehouse / bar in 1851 – and infamous now as the place Charles Saatchi and wife Nigella Lawson had their much publicised physical contretemps. Great seafood, good wine list and two magnificent private rooms. Terrific Sunday lunch spot too.
- A hidden gem in Knightsbridge, a one Michelin ‘secret pleasure’ Gatsbyesque jewel from Alfredo Russo – and cosy bar with garden – The Franklin. We dined there with Fernando Guedes and the Sogrape Board – tasting some of their Liberty Wine partner wines – and the Bar has 22 types of Gin!
- Yorkshire – see earlier this week for two one-star experiences in the Yorkshire Dales and Moors.
- And two unforgettable, yet contrasting experiences in Vienna. Restaurant Bauer – fronted by owner Walter since its opening 30 years ago. No frills, nothing fancy, no gimmicks, just a straight-forward Viennese classic. Highest standards, quiet conversations, excellent old-school service – starting with a traditional complimentary slice of Leberkäse with a delicious onion mustard. Housed in a small listed old building in the old town. Michelin starred since the 1990’s – deservedly so.
And so back to where we started – Restaurant Konstantin Filippou’s masterpiece. A passionate, crazy, half-Greek / half-Austrian owner and chef. Pure passion. Pure pleasure. Brandade with caviar, mussels, Zander with truffles, Croatian langoustines, incredible desserts, brilliant Sommelier (Alex) and interactive fun, joy, surprise and delight. Grab the two-seat Kitchen Table if you can. Fabrizio (a young waiter) brings Sicilian brio to the experience and look out for budding 22 year-old chef in the making – Pascal.