Food Bloggers Meet-Up
Le Restaurant de PAUL, London
I am an avid aficionado of Paul’s Boulangeries, they are to be found in every railway station and airport in France, and many a time one of their crusty filled baguette sandwiches has sated my appetite whilst travelling…….founded in 1889, they symbolise everything that is great about French bread, and for the most part they have stuck to their commitment to the best traditional baking methods. Since their conception, five generations of bakers have made the PAUL name known throughout France and, increasingly, around the world, including London. And, it was to London that I and six other food bloggers made our way two weeks ago, for a friendly meet-up and a review opportunity of Paul’as new restaurant situated in Covent Garden.
Le Restaurant de PAUL in Covent Garden houses the usual bakery (boulangerie and pâtisserie) in front of house which then leads back into an elegant French dining area; parquet flooring led us past vintage French dressers to our table, where beautiful wall lights and 18th century style French murals adorned the walls……it felt very Brasserie, very French and was warm and welcoming. After being shown to our table, the restaurant menus were offered to us to peruse and choose our meal. The menu for the restaurant is mainly “Cuisine de Bonne Femme” (fresh, honest and simple cuisine that is served in all French homes), with some traditional brasserie favourites such as Soupe à L’oignon, Confit de Canard aux Olives, Coq au Vin and Paté de Campagne.
We all chose our starters, ranging from vegetarian sharing platters, charcuterie platters to baked Camembert and settled down to enjoy our culinary feast; the platters were very cleverly sitting on top of several jars of pickles and preserves, which elevated them off the table for easy sharing! I decided to share a veggie platter with two of my friends, which came with freshly made cheese gougères and comprised crudités, pickled vegetables, free-range eggs, dips and mayonnaise. The charcuterie platter looked amazing, and I did try a couple of slices of saucisson and terrine. All the starters were served with a basket of Paul’s famous bread – a selection of baguette, pain, rye breads and seeded rolls. Along with my glass of rose wine, it was all very convivial and extremely tasty.
The starter platters and plates were cleared away, our conversation continued in between sips of wine and soft drinks and then our main courses were brought out……I chose a delicious and succulent Demi Poulet au Grain Rôti a L’Estragon – half a roast grain fed chicken with garlic and tarragon, it was served with salad and a bowl of crisp fries…….the chicken was tender, the herbs subtle and aromatic and the fries were crisp and golden….it was fragrant with flavour and beautifully cooked. My friends tucked into Toulouse Sausages with Mashed Potatoes and Bordelaise Sauce, Roasted Stuffed Pepper with Grilled Vegetables and Rice, Confit of Duck with Olives and Pan roasted fillet of sea bass with braised fennel.
It seems unbelievable that after such a wonderful two course meal that any of us would have room for desserts, but for most of us, we did! Strawberry cake, chocolate tortes, Ice Creams and macarons were wheeled out with coffees and teas……I opted for a Cafe Gourmand which was a creamy latte served with three dainty Paul macarons…..it was a fabulous finale to a very unpretentious and tasty meal. I would have no hesitation in returning to Le Restaurant de PAUL, the food was well cooked and generous, the atmosphere warm and cosy, the staff friendly and attentive and with prices ranging from £8:50 to £17:00 for a main course, they are reasonable and very competitive.
With thanks to the PR and all the staff of Paul’s……between all of you, our blogger meet-up was a huge success and we will all return with family and friends. As well as snacks, pre-dinner meals, main meals, sandwiches and cakes being served in Le Restaurant de PAUL, they also serve a very good Afternoon Tea for two – Available from 2.30pm till 5.30pm with a delicious selection of PAUL’s teatime treats such as sandwiches, cakes and brioches, and all served with PAUL jam and butter – that is DEFINITELY on my list for next time. My intrepid fellow bloggers were: Sylvia, Nayna, Heidi, Manjiri, Mabintu and Tina.….their reviews will follow soon. That’s all for today, see you soon, Karen
Fiona Maclean: London Unattached – An Introduction to Le Restaurant de PAUL
Nayna Kanabar: Citrus Spice and all things nice – Food Bloggers Meet at Le Restaurant de PAUL, London
Heidi Roberts: Kitchen Talk – PAUL & Meeting Up With Fellow Food Bloggers
MANJIRI CHITNIS: Slice of Me – LE RESTAURANT DE PAUL – BOULANGERIE TRANSITIONS INTO A RESTAURANT
Tina Chawla: The Spicy Pear – An Evening at Le Restaurant de Paul, Covent Garden An Evening at Le Restaurant de Paul, Covent Garden
Sylvia: Happiness is Homemade – French style dining experience in Le Restaurant de PAUL, Covent Garden