The Gore Hotel proudly regards itself as one of London’s finer hidden treasures, a quintessentially British boutique hotel where service and discretion are just as important as the trappings of luxury. The Resident steps inside to sample the delights that acclaimed chef Daniel Galmiche is cooking up at 190 Queen’s Gate restaurant…
Words: Alexander Larman
Much beloved by musicians of all backgrounds – Bar 190 was famously where the Rolling Stones launched Beggars’ Banquet – it is seeking to place itself in the top sphere of dining by hiring the acclaimed chef Daniel Galmiche as ‘consultant chef’ and transforming their restaurant from an undistinguished bistro to something really special. Have they succeeded?
The answer is both ‘yes’ and ‘not quite yet’. Galmiche is one of the country’s most talented chefs, earning Michelin stars for his cooking at places as distinguished as The Vineyard and Cliveden, and his impeccable standards are maintained here.
The menu’s consciously less in the fine dining mode than some of his previous berths, but dish after dish wows with a combination of technique and flawless execution. Duck liver parfait is served in a Kilner jar and comes complete with perfect brioche, made by the pastry chef, and only costs £9.
A starter of king crab and chicken wings shows similar flair and a mastery of technique, and main courses of pork belly and beef rib show how comparatively everyday dishes can be lifted to another level by the application of careful thought and top-notch execution. Down to a perfectly selected, slightly unusual cheeseboard and a dessert of caramelised apricots, nothing that you will eat here is anything less than memorable, and proves Galmiche’s mastery of his brief.
Main courses of pork belly and beef rib show how comparatively everyday dishes can be lifted to another level
The difficulties come elsewhere. The restaurant is packed with pre-theatre diners, and three courses of food of this calibre at less than £30 for a set menu is one of the best deals anywhere in London. However, once the evening’s patrons have departed, the stylish and welcoming dining room unavoidably takes on a slightly thinner aspect, and it is this that the hotel will have to deal with if the restaurant is to acquire the reputation that it so richly deserves.
The Gore, 190 Queen’s Gate SW7 5EX; 020 7590 6725; gorehotel.com