LONDON | Salut! has raised the bar for restaurants in North London. The area is already full of great eateries serving modern European food but this intimate dining experience trumps all others, regularly booking out throughout the week. We recently headed down for a night of relaxed indulgence.
Resting on the corner of Essex Road and Wakeham Street, the small restaurant seats no more than 30 guests within their dimly lit space. My guests and I took a table by the window and quickly got into a bottle of light and fruity Joan d’Anguera red wine and some truffle butter and bread. This gave us ample time to peruse the simple menu.
We began with the roulade of pheasant. The dish was simply described as being served with mushrooms, swede and rosemary but what lay before me was something altogether more interesting. The pheasant roulade was perfectly complimented by each and every one of the surprise additions to the plate. It was served atop a micro herb pesto with lightly baked potatoes and sautéed oyster mushrooms as well as thinly sliced turnips.
Next came the cognac-flamed Hampshire red deer with celeriac, parsnips and blackcurrants. The two succulent portions of deer came with a creamy celeriac mash, smoked celeriac cubes, baked parsnips and sautéed kale. The blackcurrants had been made into a rich and sweet sauce, perfectly complimenting the edible art that lay before me.
All the sauces and sides had been carefully curated by the executive chefs, the Lange Brothers, coming together in one beautiful meal. We mopped up every last drop with the never ending supply of bread, making sure nothing went to waste.
By the time we were half way through our second bottle of wine, it was time for dessert. We had been watching the chefs all evening, thanks to the open kitchen, and couldn’t help but marvel at the plating of each new sweet dish coming out. The chefs effortlessly created the meals with flair, sans any cursing and somehow without an ounce of sweat.
We shared the two desserts. The pumpkin pie was topped with meringue and came with even more delicious accompaniments. A stream of creamy tonka bean marscapone was sprawled out with chestnuts and a dollop of lime sauce cut through the cream all before the sweet pumpkin sorbet cleansed the pallet, leaving us ready for dessert number two.
Surrounded by a nest of sugar, were three small chocolate domes, filled with a liqueur crème, and served with a chocolate brandy sauce and some sour cherries. It was divine. We wanted more but couldn’t imagine fitting in anything else. My two guests and I sat there, panting as we slowly slipped away in our own respective food comas.
You get superbly thought out food at Salut! but do expect to pay for it. We spent around £80 each, including service, but it was certainly worth the price. The waiters were friendly and unusually attractive, the food was beyond incredible and the atmosphere was relaxed and intimate. For a special night out, make your way over to Salut! and treat yourself to some food which someone has clearly poured their love and attention into. It’s one of our favourite dining spots in London.
412 Essex Road
London N16 0AS
Telephone: 020 3441 8808
Mon – Wed: 6:00pm to 11:00pm
Thu – Sat: 12:00pm to 3:00pm; 6:00pm to 11:00pm
Sun: 12:00pm to 3:00pm; 6:00pm to 10:00pm