I have this love-hate relationship with food, I love it but it hates me. That being said food is not just fuel for me, dining and eating out is all about the complete experience. Who doesn’t love catching up with friends over a spaghetti carbonara and a glass of vino. I even enjoy the slightly more stressful experience of having to translate a menu, when eating our with my Grandparents. ‘I don’t like messed about food’ says my Grandpa every time we go out. ‘Neither do I.’ I always tell him but I don’t think we mean the same thing. He likes burgers with a side of meat and the only vegetables he eats are peas and chips! Chips I love peas I can leave.
Anyway, let’s talk about my experience the other day, I convinced the husband to take me out to a swanky newly updated Hotel restaurant in London, Galvin at the Athenaeum Hotel. I love the Athenaeum, it’s a beautiful laid back Central London Hotel with easy access via Green Park Underground and it overlooks the beautiful Green Park. I spent many a Friday night here in my early 20s with friends and colleagues. Outside the hotel is a beautiful living wall, something that hasn’t changed after all these years which comforted me as did the friendly doorman who smiled as I entered the hotel. I am not a fan of change, I still feel 24 (which was roughly the last time I visited the Atheneaum) but I certainly don’t look 24, however that really doesn’t bother me. The more you all get to know me, the more you will learn that I appreciate every line and every wrinkle. Anyway, back to the Atheneaum. I was greeted at the entrance by a delicious vanilla esk scent. A good smelling hotel is always at the top of my favourite places that deserve a return visit list. To the right of the entrance is the hotel lobby and reception area, where I also spotted a large bowl of sweets, maybe for little children or maybe sweet toothed bloggers.
The lounge area and bar has changed a lot since the last time I visited, the hotel has had a massive facelift. In fact the last time we visited it was under construction. The Atheneum has always been wonderful but its now much more sleek, super luxurious and ultra modern but not that overly soulless modern. It has cozy large sofas and warm friendly staff. The bar area is beautiful, designed in dark colours mixed with a few pops of mustard yellow creating a cool, calm, relaxing vibe. The tables are black marble (my favourite) and the bar is marble too. At the back of the lounge is a vintage cinema screen playing a loop of scenes from romantic movies. It’s to create a comforting romantic vibe says ‘William assistant food & beverage Manager.’ A very unique concept and very appreciated by the film buff inside me. I ordered a cappuccino you all know my coffee preferences by now (but if you don’t almond milk cappuccino), it arrived with a chilled glass of water and a plate of chocolate truffles. Yes soft, gooey chocolate truffles. Well I have never and will never turn down chocolates so they were eaten and the coffee was drunk.
The husband arrived late as per usual he ordered a whiskey sour (standard) and we headed out of the bar to the restaurant. I ordered a glass of something cool and bubbly and then we went about devouring the hot bread presented to us with the salty butter. Carbs are our friends people not our enemy.
For my starter, I chose the crab lasagna and the husband chose the mixed vegetables. My lasagna looked like a piece of art, it also tasted fantastic and was covered in a deliciously light hollandaise sauce. The husband was advised that his starter could be spicy, he almost didn’t get it (he can’t handle spices). In Indian restaurants, he always orders a Chicken Tikka Masala, despite our local Indian always telling him that it is a little girls dish. Suffice to say the vegetables were not spicy but warming and he was pleased, which is always a relief for me.
The mains arrived, I went for the fish, it was light but delicious and he had the chicken, we both ooohed and aaahed over our mains and then the chips arrived!! They arrived with a chipotle mayonnaise they were probably the best chips I have ever eaten. And I am an expert like coffee, cake and Chanel bags, chips I know. We ended our meals with a chocolate mousse/chocolate fondant for me and a stick toffee pudding for the 35 year old child opposite me. Both were like the previous courses really great. Lastly I ordered a mint tea and the sleepy husband ordered a double espresso, but our lovely waiter came back with two pots of tea for me and told me I must try the Turkish tea it’s beautiful. I can concur it was fantastic.
We floated out of the restaurant and hotel feeling amazing. ‘Thank you so much’ I said to whoever crossed my path, the waiters, the bartenders, the front of house, the receptionists and even some random hotel guests. The evening ended with a few cheeky sweets from the reception desk and off we went home to the cats.
Thank you for reading.
(All views expressed in this post are my own. This is not a sponsored post I did not receive anything from writing review.)