19th July 2015 – 12.30pm
This place had been on my wish list for a while. The cafe has a great reputation so I was looking forward to trying it. We booked on this deal using Bookatable which offered a three course meal for £19.50 which also included a glass of wine. This menu changes daily so there is no guarantee fussy eaters will find something they like! Entering the restaurant it certainly had a very quaint French feel about it and felt incredibly welcoming. I really did feel as if I had been transported to a little Parisian café. Once seated, we then set about looking at the menu. The set menu doesn’t have many options; two per course but the main menu also had a nice range should you want to choose from that. Funnily enough the three of us all opted for the same options of the pork rillette for the starter, battered coley and chips for main and then we opted for the crème fraiche mousse with a compote of blackcurrants and redcurrants for dessert.
Bread was already laid out on the table, as was a carafe of water. The butter was soft enough to spread on the bread. I did feel the bread was a touch dry but had an amazing flavour, particularly in the crust. After a short wait the first course arrived and surprisingly it was rather large. The pork arrived in a big slice with an accompanying salad, lardy cake (fruity bread) and red onion jam which was hidden under the salad. Whilst large, the combination worked beautifully. The pork was not too dry and broke easily, the lardy cake had nice fruit pieces in it and was lightly spiced. The red onion jam was sublime and really set the dish off. We were all very happy.
We were all already feeling quite full after the starter so it was a good job we had a little break before the main arrived. When it did, again the portion size was very generous, particularly considering the price we were paying. Each plate had two smallish pieces of coley which were lightly battered but managed to have incredible flavour. I note from their menu that the Secret Herb Garden had provided something towards the batter, which might explain it. There will also a small gathering of rustic chips and were too filling for me but still nice. They also came pre-salted. Again there was a nice accompanying salad. The best bit on the plate was a home-made tartare sauce which was chunky, flavoursome, and creamy. If I wasn’t so full I would’ve slathered everything in it. Again my dining companions felt the same way but we all struggled to finish the dish as we were getting so full.
Saying that we were full, nothing was going to stop us from trying dessert. There was a sweet option and the cheese option and again we all went for the sweet option which was a crème fraiche mousse accompanied by a berry compote. Perhaps not so surprisingly we managed to finish these as it slid down the sides. The berries were zingy, fresh and full of flavour and the mousse was light and creamy and not to sharp. It felt a bit like a lighter version of a panacotta.
Service albeit a touch slow was friendly and helpful, so much so that they added one of the extra glasses of wine to the deal as I had not had a glass myself (and had been offered a soft drink as an alternative).Cafe St Honore is a lovely little place, evoking a Parisian atmosphere. I am looking forward to coming back here again to try the main menu.
Food – 8/10
Service – 8/10
Overall – 33/40
Cost – £63 for 3 three course meals and wine from the classics menu plus one further glass of wine.