Vegetarian tasting menu at Alimentum

I had been wanting to take my friends Sue and Michael to Alimentum for a while and when the restaurant announced head chef Mark Poynton had created a vegetarian tasting menu for Vegetarian Week, this was the perfect opportunity.
I started with Alimentum’s meanwhile (in)famous celery martini:

Celery martini

After canapes (the fennel jam sourdough crisps) and amuse (pea mousse with goat’s curd) our meal proper started with an amazing asparagus dish again with goat’s curd and smoked hazelnuts:

Asparagus, goat's curd, smoked hazelnut
Th really intense flavours of asparagus and hazelnut were mellowed by the cheese.

Cauliflower, comte sauce
Next up was a cauliflower dish with a comte sauce. This was lovely and warming with crunchy cauliflower and the best cheese sauce I had ever tasted.

Leeks, egg, potato
Then, slowly cooked and then charred leeks, slowly poached egg, potato crisp. Another dream of harmonising flavours and contrasting textures.

Artichokes
The equivalent of the meat main was a dish of artichokes and ceps. Strong flavours with a really meaty feel to it. Warming and filling.

All the cheeses
Having spotted the cheese trolley, we had to interrupt the tasting menu with a cheese board. Not wanting to choose, we just had one of everything and excellent it was. Perfectly matured and kept cheeses, from mild goat to strong washed rind and blue. Marvellous.

Ginger granita, lemongrass curd
After the rich cheeses, this palate cleanser of ginger granita, lemongrass curd and gingerbread crumbs was an excellent way of calming our palates somewhat while still keeping them excited for the desserts to come.

Battenberg
The first dessert was the return of a favourite from last year: Battenberg, apricot sorbet and amaretto foam. Sweet, fruity and tangy, a hint of summer during this dreary and cold May.

Pineapple, yoghurt
The last dessert was a dish from the April supper club: BBQ pineapple with yoghurt in different ways. This cooking method really brings out the flavour of the fruit and the yoghurt calms it down again a bit.

Petit Fours
And finally with our coffees, the petit fours.

Almost more enjoyable than the meal was watching and listening to my friends’ reactions which made me very happy indeed as they had come up specifically from South London.

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