Aubergine: The Grand Tour
I'm Counting My Lucky Michelin Stars -
At Aubergine, Drabble & Tomasin Rolled Out The Red Carpet!
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I had read somewhere that the pairing of World Class Sommelier and MCA, Thierry Tomasin (formerly of Le Gavroche), with Michelin Star Chef Bill Drabble at Aubergine- "was like pairing Chateau d'Yquem and Roquefort!" Whoever made this statement hit on the perfect analogy for this award winning team.
In my humble opinion, one of the finest laid tables in London can be found at this Chelsea address- It is a proper jewel of a restaurant!
I arrived well before the first reservations for the evening, so I could sit and relax on the comfortable sofa in the very pleasant company of manager Thierry Tomasin and Chef Bill Drabble. Enjoying the early evening air- through the open glass front doors- sipping a flute of House Champagne, we traded opinions over the various flavors, undertones, textures and colors of some Hawaiian 'Grand Cru' chocolates that I had sent them.
Drabble insisted that we try his chocolate, as he slipped away down the stairwell to his kitchen. He reappeared with a lovely 3 compartment, ice glass, rectangular tray with several small squares of each dark, light and white chocolate. The aroma of each square, even before entering the mouth, was rich and voluptuous- and had the most exceptionally creamy texture on the tongue. He won't share his secret though... It is special chocolate that he gets from... his dark Yorkshire eyes sparkled as he teased... he won't say!
Tomasin laughed at his Chefs playfulness and offered me a tour of the dining room. A wood framed, glass paneled, walk-in wine cellar to the left (with a growing selection); and a lovely, refreshing flower arrangement to the right; frames the entrance to the comfortably hued room. New high backed, nicely padded chairs in pleasing wide stripes of two rich tones, are sure to make each guest even more comfortable. The art work has changed, which always seems to give a lift to a room. Tables well spaced. Linen crisp and white. Silver and crystal shine. Lighting- subtle and flattering. The mirrors at the back lend the illusion of openness and casts a warm glow over the entire room. I personally do not care for the wooden floor, as it does not seem to enhance the soft nature of the rest of the room, although I can appreciate that it is much easier to keep spotlessly clean than carpet. I like the room. It is not opulent or dripping, not sparse or cold. It's just comfortable.
My cover had been set- but before I could dine I was to have 'The Grand Tour' of the kitchen. I couldn't wait!