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"My absolute favourite restaurant in London", declaims a fan in love with Agnar Sverrisson's Michelin-starred Texture. A lofty Georgian space is well served by its classy Nordic-inspired finish (neutral tones, shapely twigs, Scandi artworks) and the swish Champagne bar confirms Texture's
status as a luxe destination. Pin-sharp technique and a light touch (aided by limited use of butter and cream) define an Asian-inspired starter of Norwegian king crab with coconut, macadamia and lemongrass, while first-rate Black Angus rib-eye stars in a more classically inspired combo of ox cheek, horseradish and girolles. Elsewhere, briny-fresh Cornish turbot is pointed up with heritage cauliflower, pickles and a red wine jus. It's about "flavour intensity" over "unnecessary adornment", although the results look as pretty as a picture. "Knowledgeable" service is much appreciated, and the global wine list is a serious piece of work. In short, Texture is "textbook".
Texture’s Champagne list opens with the famous Lily Bollinger quote. You know, the ‘drink it when I’m happy and when I’m sad’ one. Then, just to remind you that it takes its Champagne seriously, it moves in to a couple of pages that outline its history, production methods and classification system. It’s not just the number of bins available – though 130 was about as many as any list managed – it is the breadth of producers represented. While many lists majored on multiple offerings from grande marques, Texture had no more than six wines from any house. Its 45 producers (listed alphabetically from Agrapart to Vouette et Sorbée) stretch across the entire champagne region, covering every style from extra-brut to off-dry, and oak-aged to blanc de blancs.
Cold January started with a very stylish lunch. Once again my carriage arrived and swiftly took me to meet Nespresso at Texture, a Michelin-starred restaurant by Chef Agnar Sverrisson and Xavier Rousset. The restaurant is serving modern European fare with strong Scandinavian and Icelandic influences using locally British sourced ingredients. The restaurant is beautifully set in a white double fronted house, just off Portman Square, London. Clean lines, aesthetic pleasing, welcoming staff, what else could I ask for? Well, a surprise launch of new Nespresso decaffeinated grand crus...
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You would be forgiven for believing our lives to be serene, breezing from one lunch to the next in an aura of calm and professional efficiency, but, dear readers, we must reveal that this is merely a carefully-crafted illusion. Had you seen an anxious Chris almost turfed out of Texture while Rachel sprinted to the restaurant, her timekeeping at the mercy of a severely delayed Central Line, you would be convinced of this. Our eventual arrival at the Michelin starred establishment was sweaty, hungry and apologetic. Fortunately the staff at Texture (except perhaps the entrance desk lady who tried to force Chris to have...
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