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Review: The Aubergine in Marlow is second to none
THE Aubergine in Marlow is my kind of restaurant. The atmosphere is laid back but extremely professional, the décor is tasteful and muted and the food is beautifully presented and bursting with flavour. And to top this it has an amazing view over the weir. This is a beautiful place to dine, writes Rebecca Cain.
It was a Monday night and the restaurant was full, which shows how popular this small restaurant situated at the Compleat Angler Hotel is.
Head chef Miles Nixon moved to the restaurant from the Aubergine in Park Walk, London about four years ago.
The restaurant, which has the Aubergine theme throughout with purple and green hues, has three rosettes and the emphasis is on using fresh, seasonal ingredients.
We were given a warm welcome from assistant restaurant manager, Samuel Radisson, who is incredibly knowledgeable about the menu, as is restaurant manager and sommelier Arnaud Tubeuf.
Whilst we were deciding what to order we were given Wild Mushroom Arancini with Truffle sauce. These were delightful crispy balls of mushroom risotto with the most delicious sauce. Alongside this were delicate smoked salmon and caviar bites which were lovely and light.
We were then given a choice of five breads- black olive, rosemary and sea salt, sesame, brown or white. I went for the rosemary and sea salt and smothered it with their home made butter. Even the bread is to die for.
After we had ordered I had a glass of Prosecco Conegliano Valdobbiadene, reserva, which is wonderfully soft on the palate and very easy to drink.
The chef's attention to detail is second to none as we are given an amuse-bouche of tomato and pepper gazpacho with basil foam, which is served in a tall shot glass. The gazpacho had a certain kick to it and you could really taste the pepper.
All this before the starter! I had Tortellini of Native Lobster, Courgette Two Ways and Lobster Butter Sauce. This is one of the nicest starters I have eaten in a long time. The sauce was so smooth and creamy with the sweet meaty flavour of the lobster. The tempura courgette served alongside complimented it perfectly and the batter was crisp and light.
My boyfriend, Tom, had the Pan Seared Scallops, Pea Purée, Peas Shoots and Lemon Gel and Aged Balsamic. There was three plump scallops on the plate which were perfectly complimented with the fresh pea shoots and purée.
For mains I had the Roast Loin of Lamb with Tarragon Panna Cotta, Onion Purée, Fondant Potato and Lamb Jus. With a slight raise of the eyebrow from Samuel I had my lamb medium- it is usually served medium rare.
The two large slices of meat were tender and bursting with flavour and I thoroughly enjoyed the fresh broad beans and cherry tomatoes which were served with it.
Tom had Gressingham Duck Breast, Duck Leg Pastilla, Red Onion Tart Tatin and Pedro Ximenez jus. As with all the other dishes the presentation is just exquisite and almost looks too good to eat. The duck was cut into chunks and had lovely, crispy skin, as all good duck should.
Before dessert we were given coconut mouse with mango sorbet, which was fresh and tangy.
For dessert I had White Chocolate Brulee, Raspberry Gel, Pistachio Cakes and Raspberry Sorbet. The brulee was so creamy which went wonderfully with the sweet and sour taste of the raspberry sorbet.
Tom had Poached Rhubarb, Oat Crumb, Egg Custard Tart and Rhubarb Sorbet which he polished off pretty quickly.
Two courses are £44 and three courses £50.
I really could not recommend this restaurant enough. It is doing everything right from the exemplary service to the exquisite food.
To book go to www.atozrestaurants.com/auberginecompleatangler/ or call 01628 405 405.
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