Sometimes when you are really looking forward to something it doesn’t quite live up to expectations, not so last Friday at Paulo de Tarso and Nicolas Jaouën’s Margot in London’s Covent Garden.
Nestled on the corner of Great Queen Street and Wild Street just off Long Acre, the early Victorian stone façade exterior elegantly introduces you to Margot. The interior is a contemporary mix of deep blues, pale marble and copper accents throughout, subtle and confident. Lunch was with Pooja Sharma-Jones Sales and Marketing Director, Drake & Morgan who was also visiting for the first time and seemed equally impressed with the introduction to Margot so far.
You are greeted warmly on arrival and shown to your table by staff who know precisely what they are doing. Once seated service begins immediately, the menu is explained in detail, not just what with recommendations but also portion size options. Paulo and Nicolas’ signature service style is a fundamental element of the restaurant’s concept and is evident.
The menu is extensive and the only difficulty I had was in narrowing down the selection. I did eventually and chose Beef tartare, black truffle, scrambled eggs to start with Roast saddle of venison, savoy cabbage, pumpkin sauce, glazed chestnuts for main course. Pooja decided to go with two of the waitresses’ recommendations, Burrata from Puglia, Heritage tomato salad, basil pesto followed by Tagliolini with Sicilian red prawns, artichokes and cherry tomatoes.
Burrata from Puglia, Heritage tomato salad, basil pesto
Our verdict on the food…Pooja, “The Burrata starter was sublime, so creamy and sweet and the Tagliolini with the red prawns was equally delightful”. Beef tartare is one of my favourites and Margot’s was simply wonderful. The best for me however was yet to come, the venison was medium rare and the best I have ever tasted, please try it.
Roast saddle of venison, savoy cabbage, pumpkin sauce, glazed chestnuts
We were joined later by both Nicolas Jaouën and Paulo de Tarso, Paulo spent some time with us explaining his vision for Margot and his absolute passion for service. His perception of customers’ needs and wants is best explained by Atticus Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird. “You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view … until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.” I can only assume Paulo had stepped into mine temporarily, I left Margot more than contented.
So a big thank you to Pooja for her company and to Paulo, Nicolas and team at Margot, I can’t wait to come back soon.