As a sports reporter, I normally grab some food on the go but the chance to enjoy some fine dining at The French Table was one I couldn’t resist.
The restaurant is located a short walk from Surbiton Station and you would almost not know it was there given its location away from the hustle and bustle of commuter belt London.
But I’ve found the best places in this city are generally where you’d least expect and, almost always, away from the crowds. The French Table is one of these hidden gems.
We were given a table with a view and immediately felt relaxed thanks to the friendly service team before taking a thorough look at the menu on offer.
We were offered a selection of breads to start and the chorizto bread was absolutely fantastic and prompted me to research where I could find some in the shops as well as the recipe following our visit.
With complements of the chef, we were given cucumber gazpacho with strawberries and Pimms granite.
If I was a fan of cucumber in general I probably would have enjoyed it more, however it was refreshing.
As a starter, we both went for the roast quail in honey and black pepper with goats cheese ravioli, apple puree and thyme jus.
The portion seemed small at first but it was the first taste of quality over quantity and the taste was divine but, crucially, leaving us wanting more.
Then it was time for the main event. As a meat eater, I opted for the 52 day-aged middle white pig from Huntsham farm with my friend ordered the Assiette of Herdwick lamb with homemade tagliatelle carbonara, artichoke puree, girolles and lamb jus.
The waiting time was acceptable; long enough to let the starter settle and enjoy a conversation but not too long that you're looking at the clock.
They both came as different cuts from the relevant animal and each had been cooked to perfection, surprising my friend who isn't a lamb fan at the best of times, providing sensory delight on the taste buds with the Provence Rosé wine a joyful accompaniment.
As someone who is used to seeing their plate full of food, the portion might have looked small but it was just right and left us with just enough room for pudding.
The dessert menu looked so good, we could have ordered everything on it but the peach melba with vanilla parfait, lemon balm and white peach sorbet was the one selected.
It was the perfect end to a wonderful meal as it was prepared brilliantly and we provided a citrus end to the meal and clean the palette.
Overall, it was a delightful experience with quality clearly preferred to quantity and the friendly service adding to the evening.
Would I go back again? Yes, for a special occasion. The food is excellent quality, the atmosphere is relaxed and the service is excellent. It’s somewhere to take a loved one to for a celebration even if it’s just to toast yourself.
Price: £45 per head for three courses (drinks not included)
Address: Maple Road, Surbiton, KT6 4AW
Opening Hours: Midday-4.30pm, 6.30-10pm (Tuesday-Saturday) Closed Sunday and Monday
Telephone: 0208 399 2365
Parking: Street parking
Dress Code: Smart Casual