After impressing us with their at-home offering during lockdown 1.0 and installing a new terrace out the front of the restaurant this spring, we decided it was high time to go back in to Frenchie for another visit. Last time we ate there, the restaurant had just arrived in London and was the hot new spot on Henrietta Street. Since then the likes of Din Tai Fung and Cora Pearl have also moved in, with Ave Mario, the newest site from the Big Mamma squad, recently opening too.
It’s just as beautiful inside with all the marble, polished brass and leather but on a hot June evening, the terrace was the place to be. There’s now a choice of three menus – set, tasting and a la carte – and we went for the latter, kicking off with light and crispy courgette flower tempura and the signature bacon scones with maple syrup & clotted cream. Sweet, salty, buttery and moreish, these were just as good as always, if not better.
There were some interesting ingredient combos across the starters, with strawberries in the sea bream carpaccio & chive sabayon and cherries in the tomato panzanella, but they definitely worked in both adding a freshness. The panzanella was especially standout with the tomato consomme punching up the flavour and making the dish taste just like the tomatoes you get on holiday.
The mains of duck breast with rainbow chard, carrot & za’atar and goat’s curd agnolotti with courgette & crispy olive crumble didn’t quite hit the same heights as the starters but both were cooked well and plated beautifully, as is the standard at Frenchie. The banoffee dessert however, with its fluffy cloud of caramel mousse, was another winner and is definitely one to save room for if you’ve got a sweet tooth.
And when it comes to drinks, be sure to tap up the sommelier. We asked for recs and he pointed us to a rose cider for an aperitif; a blend of apple and grape it was super refreshing and extremely drinkable, and not at all like the stuff you down by the pint at a festival.
The prices are still punchy but the food is still top quality, and we’re glad to see Frenchie is still going strong.
16 Henrietta Street, London, WC2E 8QH