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231 Ebury Street
A restaurant like they used to make ’em, this blushing rose has been fluttering its eyelashes at customers for more than half a century – “it’s so French and so very romantic”, drools one long-time fan. With a quiet terrace for balmy evenings and a bare-brick interior filled with bushels of dried herbs, flowers and twinkly candles, La Poule au Pot has built up a charming patina over the years – half of London’s ladies and gents must have been here for dates, liaisons and family get-togethers. The menu is as predictably Gallic as the waiters’ accents (think soupe à l’oignon and escargots ahead of bouillabaisse, boeuf bourguignon and magret de canard with foie gras), but the cooking has always been good enough to warrant the fondness it engenders. To drink, the house wine (poured from a magnum) is fine, but prospective fathers-in-law prefer the posh Champagnes and clarets.
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231 Ebury Street
020 7730 7763
Sloane Square Tube Station 315m
Victoria Station 818m
Royal Court Theatre 339m
National Audit Office 352m
Food & Drink:
Rate & Review
Food + drink: 4
La Poule au Pot – a delightful French bistro and a firm favourite of ours. Perfect for a relaxed weekend lunch, whiling away the day with friends over good food and wine. We'd happily recommend it to friends and family, and we've brought both here on previous occasions. Good, solid, French classic dishes served in a charming, relaxed, informal, cosy, quirkily rustic setting. We've been coming here for about 6 years. My wife and I recently went for lunch on a Saturday in January and we were yet again charmed. Venison terrine and steak frites; onion tart and cassoulet. We could only wonder why we'd left it so long since our last visit to La Poule. Overall, it's a winner. Vive la France. Vive la Poule au Pot.
Food + drink: 3
The first Monday “back at school” in January and, despite healthy New Year's Resolutions and Christmas-induced poverty, Poule-au-Pot is rammed and there's no better recommendation than that. This place always seems to be busy, yet the maitre d' usually manages to find a table to squeeze a few hopeful girls in. And a squeeze it is, as the tables are really squashed together wherever they can shoe-horn them in. But it all adds to the atmosphere which is lively, shambolic, chic and traditional all at the same time. It feels like a locals place for the Chelsea crowd (pre-Made in Chelsea, pre-Russian oligarchs). The menu is all very classic French, with a “We've been doing this for years, why change a winning formula?” feel. And why indeed. Perhaps because my signature dish, the poule-au-pot, was nothing to write a blog about: a fat chunk of chicken in a light broth with a few hunks of al dente veg floating about. Nothing innovative or exciting in the flavours. But then this is simple country cooking at its best and sticks its nose up at modern ideas so who can blame them? My friend's coq au vin was apparently more flavoursome and the duck looked good too although again both were rather conventional dishes. I had a delicious tarte tatine to finish whilst the other 2 shared a cheeseplate. Service is impeccable: the gallic waiters all seem to have a twinkle in their eyes and they're charming in a way only the Continental manage to be. Watch out for their cunning house wine policy if, like us, you can't be bothered to read the whole wine list and trust that French house is generally quaffable: they serve it by the glass. But the glass comes from a Magnum bottle. Which they leave on your table for you to help yourself. You will need all your New Year's willpower not to end up with 10 glasses on the bill as we did. Yes, it's Old School rather than Nu School but at £45 a head I think it was money well spent. Straight to the top of the class.
Food + drink: 5
Yesterday I had the absolute pleasure of being taken to lunch at Le Poule au Pot. It was certainly one of the best lunches I have had in a long time. The onion tarte was wonderful; perfect pastry and deliciously caramelised onions. I then followed with chicken breast in tarragon sauce and the breast was moist and the sauce ideally seasoned with not too much tarragon. Being a greedy mare, and on the recommendation of my host, I then had the creme brulee which was just yummy. Two bottles of Pouilly Fusee later and I was thoroughly happy with my lunch!
The service was prompt, polite and efficient. Our waiter had a lovely twinkle in his eye and was unobtrusive when attending the table to pour more wine. The atmosphere and decor were intimate but fun. The
I loved it and can't wait to go back!
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