Review of The Artisan Bistro -
I recently tried out the wonderful restaurant The Artisan Bistro in Chelsea. The owner, Plamen Yankov, uses his 16 years of experience in the restaurant trade to bring you this lovely little restaurant which serves up locally sourced ingredients in a Mediterranean style.
Most of the articles about The Artisan Bistro talk about the signature Lobster Mac 'n' Cheese. I didn't get to try it, but I'm not complaining. The chefs cook up faultless dishes, making you want to eat everything on the menu!
The simple, neutral decor within the restaurant is complimented well with the pieces of modern art hung up on the oyster coloured walls. It's good to note that even the art work are creations of local artists. At the back of the restaurant, you'll find a little micro-garden where Plamen has a variety of fresh goodies growing that are used in all different dishes.
The Crispy Aubergine with a Soy Caramel Sauce (£6.00) - aubergine in the panco breadcrumb coating was sweet like a banana fritter. That soy caramel sauce was so yummy, I wanted to lick the plate clean!
The Sauteed Padron Peppers with an Orange and Sherry Drizzle (£4.50) - simply grilled peppers with just about enough orange sherry drizzle to add a touch of flavour - I think it would've been nicer if the orange flavour was sharper though.
Grilled Prawns with Squid Ink Polenta (£12.00) - this is definitely one of The Artisan Bistro's signature dishes. The chunky prawns were grilled to perfection, and were still moist. The polenta was super smooth and had that distinct colour and taste of squid ink - so interesting! You can have these prawns as a starter or as a main, either-way you're bound to love them as much as us.
Artisan Sailboat (£25.00) - a traditional dish that fishermen would eat out on the boat. It's a true one pot wonder, consisting of mussels, lobster claw, prawns and asparagus cooked in a garlic and white wine sauce, with a touch saffron. A very simple dish, cooked to perfection with the freshest ingredients. The lobster claw was super tender and was definitely the star of the dish. The prawns were a little dry compared to the grilled prawns, but still good nonetheless. The mussels were soft and plump - a pleasure to eat. The Artisan Sailboat is definitely a good order for people who like to share their seafood!
10oz Mather's Farm Sirloin Steak (£23.00) - my eyes lit up when this arrived. The steak was chunky and looked super juicy. Sirloin isn't my favourite cut of meat but this medium rare sirloin from The Artisan Bistro was cooked to perfection. It was served with a super luxurious bernaise sauce - perfect if you like that rich butter sauce. Alternatively, you could just have a bit of black pepper on your steak and it's just as good! The roasted baby tomatoes did well to add a touch of sweetness to the steak.
Patatas Bravas with Garlic Aioli (£3.50) - these were perfect to go with my steak. The garlic aioli was the best I'd ever had, and was a perfect match with the sirloin steak.
West Mersey Rock Oysters (1/2 dozen £10, dozen £18) - Plamen told us he has customers who visit him just for the oysters. As we'd eaten so much already, we only had the one each. The oysters presented beautifully on a bed of ice, and topped with a simple shallot vinegar dressing and a dash of Tabasco. Together with the drizzle of fresh lemon juice, the oysters were as fresh as the sea with the sharpness of the lemon and vinegar. The Tabasco really gave the oysters a kick - which you might want to skip if you're not good with spice!
As I was with two other friends, I got to try out three different desserts on offer at The Artisan Bistro:
Bailey's Chocolate Tart (£6.00) - a super rich chocolate tart topped with Bailey's whipped cream. The buttery pastry added to the luxury feeling. Balancing the flavours was the raspberry coulis on the plate - which showed it wasn't just there to make things look pretty! This really was art on a plate and matched the elegant decor of the restaurant. If you're looking for something classy, then this dessert is for you.
Rhubarb Crumble (£6.00) - the best rhubarb crumble you'll find around! The rhubarb was cooked perfectly soft and maintained its distinct sharpness. I'm glad they didn't make this too sweet - definitely a grown up version. The vanilla ice-cream was creamy and added an extra touch of luxury to the crumble. So if you're looking for something comforting, then this crumble is for you.
Mint Chocolate Souffle (£6.00) - my absolute favourite dessert of the night, which is also the favourite of Plamen himself! The souffle was cooked perfectly in that when we cut it open, all that gooey chocolate yumminess oozed out! The added mint wasn't too overpowering and made this souffle from The Artisan Bistro, unique. It was super rich and the vanilla ice-cream balanced all the flavours and textures well. To add a fun factor to the dessert, there was a sprinkle of popping candy all over the plate! So if you want something different and fun - then this dessert is for you!
I'm lucky to have tried out so many different dishes at The Artisan Bistro - helps when you go out eating in a group! I genuinely didn't have anything bad to say. Everything had been cooked to perfection and was such a joy to eat. The Artisan Bistro's philosophy is "brought today, cooked today", they rarely keep anything for more than 48 hours. This shows their passion for beautifully cooked food using the freshest ingredients. Plamen does well to combine his knowledge and passion of food from his 16 years in the restaurant trade to bring you a very much enjoyable meal. The Artisan Bistro has only been opened for a few months, and is still making it's name in the London food scene. But no doubt, it will become a popular spot. It's definitely worth travelling across London to - so make sure you get down there soon.
Address: 14 Hollywood Rd, Chelsea SW10 9HY
Telephone: 020 7460 0875
Opening Hours: Monday – closed, Tuesday to Friday 12am – 11pm, Saturday 11:30am – 11pm, Sunday 12am – 5pm