When I visited: October 2016
Location: London, near Covent Garden
Team: Marcus Wareing (founder), Chantelle Nicholson (Chef Patron), Andrew Ward (Head Chef)
Rating in the Michelin Guide: Recommended
What to wear: Men – jeans or nice trousers and a shirt; women – jeans and a smart top or a smart dress / workwear
Ambience: Smart/casual, sleek
Course of the meal: Valrhona Caraibe chocolate with basil dots and leaves and lime and yoghurt
If I could change one thing: Free bread with prix fixe meal
Fans of Marcus Wareing will know that as well as his restaurant Marcus at the Berkeley Hotel, he has also put his name to the Gilbert Scott and this, more ‘casual’ offering, Tredwell’s. I visited with my partner Owl before going to a Covent Garden theatre.
We were greeted by the friendly staff and seated without a reservation, and opted for the prix fixe dinner (£28 for three courses). Unusually, we did not get free bread with this – this is hardly a deal-breaker but seems slightly petty in a restaurant of this calibre.
Our carafe of red wine was one of many possible choices from a good wine list; it is nice to have a range of carafes to choose from as you don’t always want a whole bottle when you are in a slight hurry. Our starters (Brixton crab with pear and radish, and a ‘raviolo’ of chicken and tarragon with Parmesan and roast chicken sauce) were both well-presented and the crab was beautifully light, although the chicken raviolo’s flavours were less well-balanced.
We both went for the Barbary duck breast with butternut squash and beans for the main course, which was lovely and tender. However, we could have done with some side dishes to accompany it – we were offered some upon ordering but not advised that we would need them, and as the butternut squash was listed on the menu we thought they wouldn’t be necessary, but the squash was actually just an artful smudge so if you were hungry you might want to share some vegetables or potatoes as well.
The desserts were the high point. The Valrhona Caraibe chocolate with basil dots and leaves and lime and yoghurt was rich without being too heavy and perfectly sized, and the orange blossom panna cotta with almonds and a plum financier was light and fruity without being too sweet. A waitress mistakenly tried to give us two caramels each at the same time which were meant for another table; we got these later as a welcome end-of-meal present, and enjoyed the with a green tea.
The service was good throughout although we did have to wait a while for the bill; it wasn’t a problem in this instance but might be if you had a 7.30pm theatre event to get to. Overall, I enjoyed visiting Tredwell’s and would do so again, and would agree with its ‘recommended’ rating in the Michelin Guide but wouldn’t elevate it any higher.