Posted on Tuesday, 25th November 2014
Chez Boubier, Café de Paris has opened its first branch in London on Brompton Road in South Kensington. The restaurant serves the single menu (£26.50) of salad, bread and steak and fries with a Café de Paris butter sauce that has seen its 90-year legacy thrive across Continental Europe since 1930. Its famous Café de Paris butter sauce can be found in several locations around the world with restaurants in Switzerland, Sweden, Spain, Portugal, Hong Kong and the UAE.
Its signature trademark is not only the Café de Paris sauce but also the single menu that is promised to every diner at £26.50. The butter sauce was made famous by then owned Arthur-François (Freddy) Dumont of Café de Paris. The birthplace of the butter sauce is commonly mistaken for Paris, France however, it was actually conceived in Geneva, Switzerland by Dumont’s father in law, Mr Boubier inventor of the original butter sauce. It is considered a heavily guarded secret recipe enhanced with multiple spices, herbs and other ingredients. It is so guarded even the staff don’t know the ingredients!
We arrive to a warm and inviting décor that is relaxed with its striking red colour scheme. The interior takes you back to that unmistakeable Parisian bistro feel where you can cosy up to your own booth.
To start, we begin with a green salad served with Chez Boubier dressing and a side of bread. Don’t be surprised if they do not serve butter with the bread because there is plenty of butter to be had later on. I was even told that there is so much butter sauce that most patrons do not finish it. But of course, I was able to finish it!
When your 180-gram sirloin steak arrives, you will notice that it has been slightly seared and slightly undercooked based on your serving preference. You also won’t miss the remarkable amount of Café de Paris butter used to nestle your gorgeous steaks. This plate is then placed on a burner to continue the cooking process and melt the butter sauce in and around your steak. The wait staff will assist by turning and basting your steaks but feel free to take the reigns and baste these beauties as well. The signature butter sauce is simply superb filled with robust flavours and herbs. No one can really confirm what it is in the sauce so the wait staff and I had fun guessing what was in the ingredients. You should see if you can pick out the ingredients too!
The steak was delicious, tender and of high quality. A perfect combination with the signature butter sauce, which was delicious, but very rich and a little salty. Included in the £26.50 menu are 3 servings of French fries and I would highly recommend having this dipped in the butter sauce.
Normally, the desserts are not included in the price and are priced between £5.50 – £7. However, for the month of November all desserts are included for £26.50. The apple tarte tatin was simply gorgeous striking a lovely balance with the butterscotch sauce, vanilla ice cream and that beautiful crunchy pastry. The tiramisu did not disappoint the tiramisu snob in me considering that this is traditionally not a French dessert, it really did hit the spot.
Chez Boubier is an experience like no other. It is certainly unusual to have a single menu offered to you but after experiencing it myself I can see why the formula works and successfully so, after all this time. Service was friendly, attentive and efficient. I have to say, I enjoyed the experience and food itself. I would happily go again and recommend that you try it for yourself.
Note: Guest post by Foodpornnation
Food rating: 3.75/5
Service rating: 3.5/5
Prices: £26.50-£35 excluding drinks and service.