Balthazar has been a restaurant that I have wanted to visit since it opened its doors. But I have either never had the opportunity or when I did, then there are not booking tables left. The closest to getting to Balthazar would be their bakery that is next door. But some time it is when you least expect it that the unexpected happens.
I actually did not expect to find my brother still waiting for a table at Balthazar after I finish work around 8 O’Clock. Don’t freak out! We could not get a table booking and was advice that we could try to go for a walk-in table. This was the reason why we were waiting around for 2 hours. I was planning on to make my way home, thinking brother and friends had finished dinner. But instead I got to catch dinner at Balthazar, that was unexpected!
We started of our meal with sharing two starters between us.
The Octopus, tomato & Basil Salad (£9).
My preference would be the Escargots with garlic butter (£10.50). It probably does not compare with the one at Galvin Bistrot de Luxe which has a much stronger garlic flavour which made it great for bread dipping. But the one at Balthazar is still better than other places in London.
The starters was shortly followed by our mains and on the table there was the Balthazar Steak Frites – entrecôte steak with maître d’ butter (£23)
Grilled fillet of salmon served over a warm spinach, walnut and lentil salad (£18)
Artichoke A La Barigoule with herb gnocchi (£16)
Balthazar serves two different version on the menu which includes the Duck shepherd’s pie (£19). This was a very rich pie and I prefer the Fish Pie (£17) which is served with buttered leeks. If you are having dinner at Balathazar then I would recommend their fish pie. This was the best version I have tasted so far in London. It was indulgent and a comforting dish.
As well as the fish pie being my recommendation, the other one you can not leave not having is the souffle. This is one the reason I have been wanting to visit Balthazar and I was not disappointed. Galvin’s brother restaurants (Galvin La Chapelle and Galvin Bistrot de Luxe) serves great souffle and Balthazar now is included as another top place for souffle in London.
The raspberry souffle which cost £10 sounds expensivce but one is enough to share between two people. The staff at the restaurant explained before the souffle arrive, that the best way to eat the souffle is to make a small indention on the top and pour the creme in to the souffle. Then you are ready to indulge.
Balthazar is an all day dining with menus to cater for breakfast, lunch, brunch and dinner. The decoration will give you that French brassiere feeling and reminded me of Brasserie Zédel. It is a nice place to go out with friends or for a date evening. You might even spot celebrities here! But do note that the restaurant can be noisy and it would not be a place to go if you after some thing quiet.
(Prices correct at the time of dining)
4-6 Russel Street,