Wednesday, 26 May 2010

Take heed 'Dear readers' for there is an amazing hidden gem of the SW11 area that I urge you to visit.

One might not at first think of Battersea when looking for a fine restaurant or fine fayre,but take heed Dear readers for there is an amazing hidden gem of the SW11 area that I urge you to visit.

At the recently opened Hotel Rafayel at falcon Wharf stands the delightful Banyan On the Thames. This waterfront restaurant, as part of the Hotel complex is amazing, with delightful views over the Thames, Chelsea Harbour and the general riparian scene.

The venue comprises a fantastic bar for pre-dinner drinks and amazingly every table is a river view table. The service is extremely good, My guest and I were looked after all evening by the wonderful Kristian who amazed us by taking our quite complex order by memory and not a notebook in sight-Impressive or what? The owner explained that he chose the menu based on the most top 10 popular dishes chosen by customers purchasing meals at Harrods to create a popular gastronomy with something for everyone and indeed there is!

After choosing a delightful wine being guided by the splendid helpful Kristian we plumped for a full bodied, rich Australian red "Tintarra Horseshoe Row,Shiraz 2006",at a very reasonable £21.95 per bottle. My guest and I then moved onto choose a starter-there is an amazing choice of tempting and taste-bud tingling delights coming in at about an average of £8.

Choosing from a selection of Caramelized Quail to Smoked Salmon or Seekh Kebab, my guest for Dinner opted for "Banyan Style Chicken Tikka" It was amazing, the chicken was tender, beautifully and delicately marinated in Indian spices and Yoghurt. It arrived hot and fresh from the Tandoori Oven and was served with a delicious colorful salad.

As the sunset broke over Battersea and enjoying our river view,I opted for the "Cromer Crab,Mango and King Prawn served with a Chilli,Mango and Lime Dressing “The entire course complemented each other the Crab was delicate and fresh and contrasted amazingly with the zestiness of the lime and the delicate sweetness and fragrance of the Mango. It was presented beautifully almost like a colorful work of art with the colors and textures on the plate.

For the main course, My guest opted for Mongolian warriors Lamb Hot Pot with Basmati Rice.(£12.50) Luscious, tender pieces of Lamb, just cooked to perfection with a beautifully spicy taste, not overpowering, just right. Served with a huge bowl of Basmati Rice. For our side dishes we chose French Fries at £3.75 which were golden and crisp with a deliciously fluffy light inner, not at all greasy and a joy to eat. we also chose Buttered Asparagus at £3.95 which was delicious, not overcooked, just crisp and enjoyable. I chose for my Main Course,a delicious Rack of Kentish Lamb served with a pistachio crust with sweat Gratin Potatoes,Red Pepper Coulis and a White Onion and Fresh Mint Sauce (£18.95)

The lamb was outstanding, medium rare, tender, beautiful-The texture of the pistachio and the taste of nuttiness and meat was splendid, an unexpected combination that worked amazingly. The coulis,potato and mint sauce all made the dish perfect. My guest and I were both delighted by the meal and indeed the service was second to none.

Posted by Terence Jolley

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