Restaurant Review: Roux at Parliament Square, Westminster in London
Westminster is often a destination for tourists, and the odd MP or two. Worth stopping off for a noteworthy dinner..? often not. Turn your attention, however, to Roux at Parliament Square. Opening in 2010, Michel Roux Jr chose the elegant Grade II listed Georgian setting, steps from the iconic Parliament Square with Steve Groves as Head Chef.
Underneath an elegant large sash window, we are seated at an equally spacious round, suitably white clothed table. Across the room, a prominent wine library catches my eye with a collection of menus from selected tastings to the wider à la carte. A fusion of traditional cookery methods presented with a contemporary style – Chef Steve Groves is constantly driving the menus of Roux at Parliament Square forward to stay ahead in a capital market that is cut throat. Paired with a team who understand the dishes that come from the kitchen with informative and importantly friendly service, it is a restaurant that any fine-dining enthusiast should look to book.
It’s always reassuring to know when fine-dining destinations lead the way, sourcing predominantly from the UK. Working with a collection of the finest suppliers across the country with seasonality in mind, dishes on the refined and delicately assembled menu include starters such as Dorset crab with apple, fermented chilli and dashi and pork cheek, carrot, ale, and mangalitsa black pudding. Venturing to other corners of the country, main dishes that can be found across the tasting and à la carte include Test Valley trout with leek, pine nuts and watercress alongside Westcombe Ricotta gnudi with hen of the woods, salsify and egg yolk as well as dry-aged duck with beetroot, chicory and yukon gold potato. Desserts don’t get overlooked: some of Steve’s desserts include pear with pistachio, honey and crème fraiche, or guanaja chocolate with banana, peanut and yoghurt.
Dishes that contribute to our evening at Roux at Parliament Square include a mild asparagus plate with morel, spenwood and wild garlic, a heartier veal sweetbreads wrapped in puff pastry with Jerusalem artichoke and mushrooms, a smoked buttermilk cut of mackerel with cucumber and quinoa and a gorgeous cut of pork cheek finished with carrot, ale and black pudding. Reflecting the summer season our dessert: a ‘Gariguette Strawberry’ (white chocolate, pistachio and basil).
Classic sophistication fills the grandeur of the building that hosts Roux at Parliament Square, from suave food and beverage collections to a setting that offers a true sense of English regality. Following a recent refurbishment in 2017, the restaurant’s Drawing Room now also hosts a selection of original architectural sketches of the building itself and many of the surrounding Westminster landmarks. Reflecting on past and present, Michel Roux Jr’s restaurant proudly embraces its rich heritage whilst striving forward with contemporary plates that showcase the best of the country.
Roux at Parliament Square: 12 Great George Street, Westminster London SW1P 3AD, www.rouxatparliamentsquare.co.uk, 020 73343737, firstname.lastname@example.org