Talk about French restaurants and most people conjure up images of small portions, high prices, impossible to understand menus and pretentious staff. It can be good, but they are perceived to be too intimidating and inaccessible. Recently, however, we have noticed a number of more relaxed, bistro-style venues popping up that are definitely a welcome addition to the restaurant scene.
Côte returns to the basics of French bistro cuisine using high quality ingredients and a simple, appealing menu that would put most pubs to shame. We started with some well cooked Calamari and a portion of rich, buttery Duck & pork rillettes – both good. For mains, I went for the free-range Les Landes chicken with mushroom sauce & chips; as I sit and write this review two weeks later, I can still taste it as if it was some elaborately concocted dish – outstanding. Miss Pancake had the Duck confit which was well cooked but far too heavy on the thyme. The desserts were again of a very good standard, including an incredibly rich Chocolate fondant and a well balanced Crème brûlée.
The restaurant itself is relaxed and inviting, with dark leather booths and classic wooden furniture. The atmosphere is laid-back and the service is attentive, yet discreet. The biggest surprise of the evening was the bill; at under £60 for the full works, Côte represents one of the best value restaurants around.
Cuisine type: French
Dinner for 2 (excluding drinks): £42
For you nearest location visit www.cote-restaurants.co.uk