After a difficult week (to say the least) Friday saw an opportunity to blow off steam and go for full on indulgence to forget everything for an evening. Where better to do that in London than The Delaunay?
I arrived (via a swift one in the Lyceum) hot foot from an intense writing (well, translating) session in the Library, where I’d been working on a short play by Octave Mirbeau for the Crouch End Festival. Mirbeau was doing Pinter a full 50 years before Pinter was doing Pinter and I can’t wait to get some actors reading the stuff.
So I was both thirsty and ravenous as I stalked up a sadly depopulated Strand towards an even more desolate Kingsway, where office workers once more fear to tread. However, The D was a beacon of hope and good cheer and an avuncular commissionaire lugged open the massive door before we dumped our stuff in the cloakroom. There is no restaurant in London that does as good a welcome.
The menu remains satisfyingly consistent and its hearty Mitteleuropa food is perfect for a cold January. So, perversely I went for a cold option of oysters up front and polished them off tout de suite with a bit of Tabasco. A delicious Hungarian Reisling/Traminer helped them along before I got stuck into one of my all time favourites, devilled kidneys. Usually reserved for a Bloomsday treat round our way, as offal isn’t universally appreciated at home, it was a real pleasure to have them in a restaurant. These came with a sauce such that when I’d finished the meat I wanted to tip my head back and pour the thick spicy soup into my gullet. However, civility prevailed and I settled for complementing the chef via the waiter.
Talking of which, the service was top of the top. It almost brought a tear to the eye to be among a happy crowd of diners in one of the best rooms in London. It’s not cheap but at The Delaunay you most definitely get value for money.
To see where else I’ve been click on the google map below.
Blue Badge guide to London and academic specialising in early twentieth century history. Blogging on history, academia, and food and culture in the capital (and occasionally elsewhere).