Thursday, 9 September 2010

Not Quite the Holy Trinity

Trinity is our local bolthole where we go for a treat. After some disappointing weekend experiences in the West End we’ve found it’s far better to dine somewhere more local. Or at least local to Cowie! Our previous meal at Trinity was nearly faultless. We were treated to some of the best service we’ve ever had as well as a sensational starter of pigs head that got the better of its cousin at Wild Honey and a hare dish that rivaled the Royale at the Zetter.

If you like your tablecloths to be crisp; your service to be smooth; your wine list to be accessible and interesting and your food to be refined and imaginative then Trinity ticks a lot of boxes. But if you like your sweet things to be sweet and your savoury dishes to be savoury, then you may have a freak out like we did…

Sitting at the best table in the house and drinking effete little glasses of Prosecco we gorged on some fine bread and slightly too warm butter whilst feeling like we were in a benevolent version of the Truman Show. It seemed that the whole restaurant was constructed around us with the fellow diners showcasing dishes we might order, offering background noise and in the case of a lady next to us with a notebook, a source of constant amusement. Especially when she repositioned her husband’s spoon as he was about to use it to dig into a soufflé which was then allowed to go cold!

Cowie adored a pristine starter of tuna and crab with a tomato consomme which was as close to being the Platonic Form of Cowie’s dream starter as is possible. Meanwhile, my pigs’ trotters with quail eggs on toasted sourdough was startling. Deeply savoury and with the swine dial on maximum, it made me want to roll around in a muddy field and scratch my bottom against a barbed wire fence.

I am a big fan of restaurants that serve wine by the carafe. Cowie loves white wine, but is less of a fan of red, so the carafe approach let’s me have a glass of red with my main course. A splash of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc was ideal with our starters and some Pinot Noir was ideal with the lump of meat that arrived next.

My fillet of beef with bone marrow, snails, onion tart and bordelaise sauce was richer than a Sheikh who’s just won the pools. It pulsated with flavour and mooed with medium rare rouge. From now on I am refusing to eat fillet steak without snails and marrow on my plate. But the soggy onion tart can stay at home.

Cowie ordered rabbit two ways and had to send it back because some elements of the dish were stone cold. When the plate arrived back it was a much better temperature, but was destroyed by a vanilla sauce that smothered everything in sickly sweetness. I like vanilla a lot but have learnt my own lessons that it can easily overwhelm a sweet dish, let alone a meek and mild little bunny rabbit.

And as if the pastry chef and the rabbit chef had just played musical stations we were then presented with the most bizarre dessert we’ve had in years. The apricot tart looked stunning. The golden topping was sweet, sour and fragrant. But then things got weird. We couldn’t put our finger on it, but then it clicked. The pastry wasn’t sweet, it was cheesy. After triple checking we scraped off the topping, closed our eyes and realised that the pastry tasted identical to cheese straws. How very, very odd. So we mentioned this to our waitress who after a visit to the kitchen said it always tasted that way, but that no-one had ever complained.

Having not seen each other for ages we weren’t going to let a few sweet and savoury cross wires get in the way of a romantic evening. Especially when the starters and my beef were so ravishing. But for 150 quid, you’d expect the kitchen to be able to get the basics, such as savoury for main course and sweet for dessert, right. As we moseyed home we reluctantly relegated Trinity down our “must return to” list which means we’ll be heading to Chez Bruce for our next treat.

Trinity on Urbanspoon

7 comments:

Gregory said...

mmmm ...... sounds like Trinity are trying a little too hard for their star.

A shame, because it wasn't really broken, so why fix it.

also... I thought Trinity was an independent restaurant despite similarities with Arbutus and Wild Honey

Gregory said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Paunchos said...

@Gregory - I really like Trinity. But they did get things a bit muddled up. Wouldn't have minded so much if they had fixed things or if it hadn't been the food that was at fault. And by cousin I meant the dish was similar not that the restaurants are part of the same family. Because, as far as I know, they aren't.

Gregory said...

agree with you big time. If it is a mistake a great venue will recover well but the fact that they said "that's the way it is" is kind of bemusing in light some previously great dishes. Also understood on the cousin front.

As I am local, I have had a string of good meals there (at least double figures) and am really looking forward to my next visit to see if it still measures up.

Jennifurla said...

Your dish sounds fantastci

eatmynels said...

it made me want to roll around in a muddy field and scratch my bottom against a barbed wire fence...

brilliant

I still want to go there.

Jonathan said...

@Jennifurla - 'twas indeed delicious. Apart from the slightly soggy pastry.

@eatmynels - glad you liked the pig line. Was quite late doors when I wrote it!

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