The Hype

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Famously ‘London’s most romantic restaurant’, Poule au Pot is a local French bistro,  hidden between Sloane Square and Pimlico in what is otherwise a bit of a gastro black spot. I was sold on it by the promise of London’s best snails.

The food

The waiter reeled off quite a few specials on arrival and we plumped for the pheasant and the partridge as they sounded a bit unusual. The standard menu consisted of some delicious sounding French classics, and my escargots did not disappoint. It was a generous portion and the garlicky herby sauce was just what I had been craving ever since a trip to Nice in the summer. The mains were both perfectly cooked, and served with delicious red cabbage and potatoes – we were both very content. Despite being incredibly full I couldn’t turn down the crème brûlèe which was pretty much a perfect execution of one of my favourite desserts.

The Drink

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One of the coolest things about this place is that the house red is served in a magnum on the table, which you just drink as much of as you like. It makes for a lovely relaxing meal (and probably adds to the intimate atmosphere) as you can get on with dinner and happily get merry without waiters having to bug you and without having to make the tricky ‘to get a second bottle or to not get a second bottle?’ decision.

Overall experience

This is definitely one of the most romantic restaurants I’ve ever been to and was easily the nicest evening I’ve had in a long time. I’m sure I’ve probably eaten technically better meals in my time, but there is something about the combination of the french farmhouse decor, candlelight, comically French waiters, free flowing red wine and authentic, tasty, unpretentious cooking that makes for something quite magical.

Go there if…

You love French food and you’re trying to impress a date on a special occasion.

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Don’t go there if…

You’re not really into France, you’re taking out someone of the opposite sex and don’t want to give the wrong impression, or you’re on a budget (my date said it was reasonable for what we had, but we’re definitely not talking pizza express prices!)

If you’re pretending to have been there don’t forget to mention…

The whole menu is in French, so if you genuinely don’t speak a word of it you might want to take someone who can.

For more information

See The Guardian and Hardens.

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