ONE of the meanings of Quantus is ‘how great’ and this was no idle boast. The food was almost faultless, the ambience superb and the service friendly without being servile.
Quantus is a find and it seems most of Chiswick, judging by the delighted smiles, have found it.
The restaurant, recommended by my husband’s friend, is along a villagey strip, so there is plenty of competition, but unlike many we have been to on a Saturday night, this was full.
We were taken to a cosy section, almost like a lounge, with bench seating adorned with brightly printed cushions. You do need to mind your head as it is a step down and there were two giants among our party that evening.
Quantus, we were told, is a modern European restaurant with South American influences, and this was reflected in the cosmopolitan staff coming from Mexico, Argentina, Colombia and Kosovo. They were not only friendly, but seemed genuinely happy – which usually means they are treated or trained well, or both.
We were going to share a starter as usual, but I do like my scallops, especially tantalising with broad bean puree, crushed iberico chorizo and micro leaves, so Michael abstained, thinking about dessert.
As well as being perfectly cooked, the scallops also had a slightly curried note, which gave them a pleasing kick.
Unusually for me I also went for a fish main of pan fried wild sea bass with asparagus, roasted carrots, olives and capers and lemon butter, the olives and capers giving the delicate fish an added depth of flavour. This was a clever, well-thought-out dish.
My only niggle was that it didn’t come with potatoes so I ordered some, which weren’t nearly so nice as the crispy, gratin version I’d filched off Michael’s plate. But it’s a small niggle.
Michael went for the roasted chicken breast with potato gratin, balsamic garlic and tomato confit, the accompaniments lifting the chicken which he said was cooked to perfection.
We shared roasted peach, mascarpone, honey and almonds as I have had this concoction before and loved it. This version, which was both creamy and crunchy, didn’t disappoint and we were considering a second but resisted.
This is exceptional value for money as a two-course meal is £21 and three-course £25, although the bill is of course bumped up with wine or cocktails, of which there are plenty to choose. There is also a summer promotion for June and July: a two-course lunch for £12.50, Wednesday to Saturday from noon to 3pm.
I would heartily recommend Quantus for a romantic night out or one with friends – we actually bumped into some friends from Daniel’s junior school. There were obvious regulars as the owner welcomed each by name.
Lots of little touches like tiny goldfish bowls filled with red roses and unusually shaped wine glasses all add to the atmosphere.
Chiswick is an area where people expect good quality and certainly get it here, so it’s worth going out of your way to join them.