We booked Toklas as a birthday treat for a friend on the recommendation of the old boy, who hadn’t eaten there but had been to a wine tasting and said that the room was very good. I arrived fresh from a writing session in the Edgar Wallace (alas, I lack the Kongmeister’s prodigiousness at the keyboard and also got sidetracked by two genial conspiracy theorists) and so wasn’t quite ready for the jump in sophistication from back street boozer to Vogue-level elegance that Toklas conceals behind a concrete façade.
And it’s not easy to find. But that’s pretty much the only fault in an otherwise faultless dining experience.
I realised I was over-shabbed when the guy who took me to the table made Stanley Tucci look like Jockey Wilson after a seven nil hammering in the Circus Tavern. Still, my fellow diners, when they arrived, more than made up in beauty what I lacked in polish. While I was waiting I had a very nice vermouth and perused the menu.
Basically, I could have eaten anything on there but went for mackerel followed by guinea fowl. The mackerel was top notch with its usual beetroot but was topped by a beautifully cooked fowl which had juice and jus with some excellent veg alongside. Wine alongside was very high quality and we all agreed it was about the best meal we’d had this side of The Thing.
Quiet early on the room soon filled up with sophisticates either dining or taking yummy looking cocktails. It was expensive but excellence is worth paying for. Somewhere to go back to for a treat every now and again.
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).