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85 Maple Road
020 8399 2365
It’s hardly surprising that this bijoux restaurant in Surbiton is popular as Eric (chef) and Sarah (Front of House) Guignard have been running their restaurant long enough to know exactly what their clientele want. Eric’s kitchen punches above its weight with starters like terrine of lobster and ham hock, set off with a sweet hit of confit watermelon, or an earthy slow-cooked duck egg paired with smoked duck breast and truffle-rich mushroom duxelle, with the likes of pearlescent roasted hake set off with a gentle crustacea sauce for mains. Sarah and her team greet diners as old friends and immediately put them at their ease. The wine list is built to accommodate special occasions (there’s decent selection of magnums and plenty of Champagne), but Sarah has a penchant for unusual and interesting wines, so it’s well worth checking out their seasonal list of wines by the glass and carafe. Those after something less formal should visit for lunch, or even drop into their lovely café/patisserie, The French Tarte, next door.
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SquareMeal 2 Stars
85 Maple Road
020 8399 2365
Surbiton Station 689m
Berrylands Station 1km
Hampton Court Park 1km
Kingston University 1km
Tues-Sat 12N-2:30pm Tues-Thu 7pm-10:30pm Fri-Sat 6:30pm-10:30pm
Food & Drink:
Rate & Review
Food + drink: 3
Must be honest and say that we didn't choose this restaurant. One of our daughters kindly gave us a voucher at Christmas that we used today. It's in a pleasant part of Surbiton with a cafe/deli under the same ownership right next door and if you like the bread served in the restaurant well you can buy it right next door. The restaurant itself is a long, narrow space which looks well decorated, comfortable and tidy without giving the impression that they've had the designers in!
We both ate the lunchtime tasting menu; 5 courses -plus an amuse bouche - for £30 which we felt was excellent value. There were too many dishes to give a detailed blow-by-blow on each so I'll attempt to summarise. All the dishes were at least adequate, and some of them- I'll pick out the hake dish and the chocolate fondant dessert in particular, were better than that. I do think that if a restaurant with aspirations to cook well serves liver, it has to be both accurately cooked and the meat has to be clean- veins etc cut away. My wife's portion contained parts she preferred not to eat. We asked for my one portion to be cooked medium ( it was) and one to be medium rare (it wasn't) . The other thing I'd say is that our aspirations were lowered by the amuses bouche which really didn't taste of much. Overall though the food was satisfactory and in truth might well be worth more than they charge for it.
The wine list too offers good values, and we enjoyed our light Vaucluse red . Breads were good too ( and yes we did buy some next door on the way out). Service was friendly and timely - our meal took two hours which we feel is about right for the number/size of courses.
Revisit? Well we aren't local and I'm not sure the food is special enough to warrant the hour or so drive when we can be in central London faster. But if circumstances brought us here again, we'd have no complaints.
Food + drink: 5
Three of us wanted to go out locally to a good/top class restaurant and The French Table did not disappoint. Great service, friendly but not overly so. Food was really delicious and we will be going again. Decor beautifully calming greys, no music, lots of bubbly laughter and conversation. You could hear yourself on your table. Service was very good, staff were there when you needed them to be otherwise left you in peace to enjoy your evening out. Really don't know why we haven't been before. Thank you French Table for helping us with a memorable night.
Would love to love it more but somehow often disappoints in that it could be better. Been many times over the year but the menu has not really changed enough over the years- there is a lack of creativity. The prices have been creeping up for the set lunch on the weekend and now think poor value compared to many central London starred restaurants which have set deals with better food. On last visit, there was music playing and it was pretty awful- and they were very stingy with the (nice) homebaked bread. My plaice dish was nice- I've had it several years before- the main and sticky pudding were fine. Service was a little sloppy too and the manager was a little warmer this time but is selectively friendly.I think the problem is there is little competition in Kingston or Surbiton and is a good option for locals who do not want to travel.
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