Rating: ★★★★☆

Address: 35 Spital Square, City of London, London, E1 6DY

Telephone: +44 (0) 20 7299 0400

Galvin La Chapelle is the third restaurant opened by chef brothers, Chris and Jeff Galvin, who are famed for opening the much-lauded Bistrot de Luxe on Baker Street.

Galvin La Chapelle is housed in a Grade II listed building, which used to be a parish hall. Known as an elegant destination for modern French cuisine, Galvin La Chapelle has been gathering awards since its inception, winning 8 top restaurant awards in its first year including AA London Restaurant of the Year and Tatler Magazine Restaurant of the Year, and is now Michelin one-starred.

The restaurant offers a selection of menu to suit different tastes, including a a menu gourmand, a prix fixe lunch, an early dinner menu and a ‘Sunday Roast’ lunch menu. It also claims to have the world’s largest collection of Hermitage La Chapelle, with bottles dating from 1952. C and I went for a girly dinner and we feel thoroughly spoilt to be dining at such a beautiful, deluxe restaurant – the grand, 100ft-high vaulted ceiling has a profound visual impact, and the ambience was serene and refined.

(1) We started off with the Veloute of roast iron bark pumpkin and chanterelles, which has a creamy texture and was permeated with deep, soothing pumpkin flavours. I liked the contrast between its intense flavour and its mellow texture, and it was served with a chestnut brioche, which was delectably buttery, sweet and fluffy.

(2) Another impressive starter was the Cured mackerel, shaved fennel, apple and cucumber condiment. The cured mackerel had an amazingly tender texture, and the accompanying apple and cucumber condiment cut through the complex, fatty flavours of the fish. The dish was accomplished and it was reminiscent of my favourite flame-grilled mackerel at The Ledbury (London).

(3) What followed was the Roast rump of lamb or beef, glazed carrots & pomme fondant, which was beautifully cooked and succulent.

(4) It finally got to the point of the night when I could indulge in my dessert, which was a Valrhona chocolate soufflé with a strong, magnificent chocolate taste to it. After the substantial appetiser and main course, this dessert seemed a bit weighty, but that did not stop me from devouring the terrific treat.

Conclusion: While the food was sophisticated and precise, it was the grandeur of this illustrious venue which impressed us the most. The dining hall was crammed with class, and the staff exuded a fine sense of dignity. This intimate, civilised experience alone should be a sound enough reason to dine at Galvin La Chapelle.