Corrigan’s has become such a Mayfair institution that it flies a little under the radar these days. The London restaurant rollercoaster gets more breakneck every year, launching ambitious young restaurants from their seats as it hurtles down the dips and around the bends. Corrigan’s, meanwhile, is unbudging, and perhaps a little underappreciated as a result, compared to the capital’s hot new openings.
It’s hard to imagine the effervescent Corrigan seated in the restaurant that bears his name – at first glance, the blue-toned dining room and polished expanses seem too staid and elegant to contain him. The western reaches of Mayfair are prime business lunch territory, though, and Corrigan’s clearly does a good trade on this front.
The Irish chef’s robust, comforting cookery is well and truly on display here, with a menu of absolute crackers. A lobster ravioli hits both ends of the spectrum - delicate lobster inside tender pasta, then a wallop of sumptuous lobster bisque and a crack of vadouvan spice. A pigeon - perfect blushing rose in the middle - is matched with a date puree, a touch of garam masala and a glorious, glossy game sauce. Corrigan’s pommes anna are a wonderful example of how the restaurant elevates age-old flavours; these stunning, crispy little monoliths to the potato gods are dusted in cider vinegar powder, but ultimately they just taste like the perfect chip.
The Paris-brest has all the potential in the world to be an overly dense end to the meal, but it’s light as a feather and rich with pistachio cream. It’s all exemplary, but this cooking doesn’t come cheap - that lobster ravioli is a whopping £27. The pigeon? £42. Still, there probably aren’t many better places around here to spend your money, and you get some tasty snacks and petit fours thrown into the bargain. The friendly service lives up to the billing too with smart wine pairings that delve into Corrigan’s extensive cellars.