The Delaunay, situated on the giant roundabout that is the Aldwych, is Chris Corbin and Jeremy King’s sister restaurant to The Wolseley and Brasserie Zedel (which I have become obsessed with). The restaurant looks like it’s been around for years and has all the class and style that you may expect from two accomplished restauranteurs.
I thought this would be the perfect choice for dinner with my parents before a trip to the theatre and I wasn’t wrong.
As we walked through the door, opened for us by a smartly dressed doorman, and handed our coats to the very sweet cloakroom lady, we felt like we’d arrived somewhere that we’d never want to leave.
The restaurant is old fashioned in appearance with silver cutlery and dark wood walls. It has an elegance about it without being too stuffy. The restaurant is huge and slightly echoey giving it the perfect atmosphere. Every time someone walked in I couldn’t resist turning round in my chair to see if it was anyone exciting (on my first visit here with my gentleman companion we saw Gary Rhodes and Damien Hirst).
Some attractive and well made bread with salted butter kicked things off.
Our first waiter looked like a cross between Alec Baldwin and Dustin Hoffman but sadly had all the charm and charisma of a potted plant. I found him blunt and uninterested. In a restaurant that is so wonderfully old fashioned and charming it seemed a shame that he didn’t have the same flair. It’s worth noting that with such a large restaurant it’s pot luck whether you get a really friendly member of staff or not as throughout your meal you encounter numerous waiters – some of whom we did find particularly friendly.
All three of us went for the weiner schnitzel (breaded veal) priced at £19.75. Served simply with a wedge of lemon wrapped in muslin the veal was cooked to perfection and the breadcrumb coating was perfectly crisp. We felt quite obese by the end as it was a very generous portion. This dish sums up the food at The Delaunay – simple, elegant and perfectly cooked.
The fries (£4.50) were crunchy, salty and delicious.
The side of pickled cucumber (£4) was sharp, tangy and punched you in the chops with vinegary loveliness.
The black forest gateau (£5.75) looked beautiful and was expertly made. The sponge was moist and the filling was creamy which gave it the perfect contrast to the sharpness of the cherries.
The coffee eclair (£4.25) was sadly not quite as scrumptious. The pastry was dense and felt like it had been made a couple of days ago. The coffee filling along with the coffee coating was a coffee overload and became sickly. A light cream filling would have been more appropriate.
[ On my first visit with my gentleman companion I ordered the "Kinder Coupe" which is an ice cream sundae. The Kinder, which is £8.95 and the most expensive dessert on the menu, features raspberry, vanilla and chocolate ice cream with marshmallows, meringues and chocolate sauce. It does what is says on the tin and is seriously indulgent - only for the greedy I'd say - so I loved every single mouthful. ]
Every diner at this restaurant has to pay a £2 cover charge. I would only have a problem with this if I hadn’t enjoyed my time at The Delaunay, but I loved every second of it, so I had no problem paying. Neither the sickly eclair nor the un-charming waiter could possibly have ruined my time here. It’s a restaurant I shall enjoy going back to again and again.