Watch our interview with Head Chef Alex Fanzola of The Collection.
Lanky Girl has been eating out a lot lately and one of the few places to really blow me away is a new restaurant in South Kensington, The Collection. It’s interior has been designed under the direction of design genius Tom Dixon. The result is a cutting edge and modern interior with plush velvet chairs and intimate lighting making it very inviting. Lanky Girl and Co headed down to The Collection on a Wednesday evening to sample the food and interview chef Alex Fanzola.
Upon entering the restaurant (I have to add that the walkway lighting display is magical) we were greeted by friendly staff who took our coats and showed us to our table. The layout of the restaurant is on two levels the top-level being the dining area (great for people watching on a busy night out) and the bottom being a spacious bar and lounge area.
The Collection has an extensive cocktail and wine list and we were given the chance to try two of their signature cocktails. The first being the Prince Charming cocktail which was vodka based, very fruity and zesty. The other being the Luciana Martinez cocktail named after the model, made from slow gin, maraschino liqueur and aperol. Very strong, but delicious.
One of The Collection’s selling points is their homemade breads served with their cold pressed infused flavoured olive oils. I have to say I was blown away by the foccacio bread so moist and soft we couldn’t stop eating it and I would have finished the basket if our waiter hadn’t warned us about leaving room for the first course! We had three different olive oil dips, truffle, lemon, and basil. I have to say that my favourite was the truffle. With a focus on healthy eating all the dishes at The Collection are cooked with olive oil and no butter is used. The Collection has a great sharing concept which means you can order 3 or 4 small plates to share with friends and family.
For starters we ordered:
Now I am always afraid of raw seafood but I was impressed by this dish, it tasted very light, fresh and zesty.
Spiced chicken, carrot puree and orange.
Chicken was soft and succulent, carrot puree had a kick to it and the orange was like finding a little sweet surprise in the sauce.
Baked prawn, basil and roast garlic.
Really lovely smoky taste to the prawn, I will order this on my next visit.
Seared veal cutlet, watercress and salsa verde.
One word. Yummy!
Hay roasted lamb shank, pistachio sauce and artichoke puree.
The lamb was cooked to perfection with lovely combination of flavours. Easily our favourite dish of the night.
Barbecue grouper, samphire and spiced sweetcorn.
Grouper as a fish was new to me, it is quite meaty in texture. Additional flavour came from the samphire (which is like baby asparagus) and the tomato sauce.
Warm pistachio tartlet, white chocolate moose, and macerated cherries.
The caramelized top was sweet and crunchy, moose was fluffy and the cherries had sharp alcoholic taste. Only wasn’t so sure about the tart case would have preferred it without it.
Greek yoghurt panna cotta, preserved summer berries and lemon verbena.
A naughty treat!
Wines: Malbeck, red wine and Sauvignon Blanc Sancerre.
Apart from the food, one reason that I would recommend trying The Collection is the staff. All the staff were obviously well-trained in the food and our friendly waiter gave us lots of good recommendations. It was obvious that the staff at this restaurant really care about the food and providing the best experience which made our experience very positive.
The Collection is a great place to try Mediterranean style cooking with a twist and should appeal to everyone from families to friends and those looking for healthy alternative for dinner. If you find yourself in South Kensington do go and check it out.
For more information visit http://www.the-collection.co.uk/