04 August, 2006

Konstam at the Prince Albert - Review

Okay, so, finally got my act together and made it out to the Konstam at the Prince Albert -
Konstam #1
- (blogged about this before, but just to cover base - it's the resturant run by Oliver Rowe (new celebrity chef) where all the ingredients (well, as far as possible) are sourced from within the loop of the M25, or just *slightly* outside from what we actually experienced) with my usual Friday lunch crowd (this exercise was suggested by Fraggle, who is a rampant foodie, seconded by me (an excitable amateur), and partially-thirded by Whittleman (wannabe pro-chef) who rescued us during the booking process ;) we bagged a table for 9 (even got confirmation back via email! Unhelpfully the phone number on their website is currently wrong, the actual phone number you need to ring is 0871 0752385, thanks Mr W.) so...what is it actually like to eat there?
Konstam #2
Well...when the advance party got there? It was actually closed...the doors were locked, *and* we were, even at that stage, rather late...I didn't like that, I thought the staff should, if it is advertised outside that the doors open at 1230hrs - simply open the doors at 1230hrs...shouldn't be too tough? I mean, stood in the road we could clearly see staff bobbing about...leaving us dodging the smelly chavster beggars on the Kings Cross Road for ten minutes was a little unkind...When we did finally gain access, I asked if I might be permitted to shoot a few shots around the place and the (almost, "why are you even asking?") response was "Of course?", the staff were obviously rather laid back(and indeed) perhaps a little jaded to the lens, what with the TV show being filmed there (excellent ;) -
Konstam #3
- The decor was a bit on the "interesting" side, obviously being designed with night covers in mind, consisting (as it does) of thousands of ball-bearing chains draped around tiny modern ceiling lights, looking just a little bit BDSM for lunchtime, but not *completely* out of place (I guess) with the massage parlour opposite (note the regulars outside ;) -
Konstam #6
- and the kinky leather clothing store 3 doors down...We skipped starters and puds (which would have added £11 per head (at least)) and went right for the main course...I opted for the "Sevenoaks rump steak with Bercy butter, braised chard and mashed potato"...One real high point that must be noted here is that you watch the chef cook your food, no matter where you are in the resturant, you can see the range and the preparation area... ;)
Konstam #4
- The service? Way slower than snail's pace - not sure who their usual lunchtime clientelle are, but they certainly aren't in any massive hurry...I can picture a lovely evening meal, working one's way through the rich offerings sipping the *very* well selected English wines taking the best part of 4 hours...(and very pleasant that would be indeed)...
Konstam #5
...but this is absolutely not suitable for a standard work lunch trip...

The food? Well, my steak, and I'm loathed to say this, was actually a lot worse than average in my opinion, *perhaps* I had been spoiled by the "Exmoor reared" from the weekend (which was frankly superb)...M25 beef? 'fraid I think it's actually rather poor...perhaps those cows need a few hills to walk up to develop the flavour, and a bit less of the CO2...there is a reason people ship in beef from Aberdeen then...

Duck, Chicken and Lamb were excellent though (I am told)...actually tasted a bit of the chicken which was *fantastic*, but was (and thanks to the layout we saw this done) effectively deep fried in about half a pound of butter....extremely rich, but extremely good...

Update - Read DJMathu's review here...

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