In the hustle and bustle of London city life, sometimes it’s a next to impossible task to find a quiet cul de sac for a discreet dinner and a glass of wine with your close friends. When we do discover these oases of calm, we do like to highlight them to our followers: Step forward 28°-50° Wine Workshop and Kitchen Fetter Lane.
It’s a shorting walking distance from Aldwych, yet it is in a quiet basement space on Fetter Lane. You can imagine it caters mainly for the business lunch clientele from the many lawyers that work in the area. The decor is very much a grown-up, serious affair with rustic tables and oak flooring with the highlight naturally being the numerous display shelves of accessible and also ‘collector’s list’ wines rarely seen in other restaurants.
I have to admit my first impressions of the food menu was that it was unadventurous, but they know their business lunch clientele wants traditional fare. However, the execution of the dishes was superb as you can see from the photos below. We started off with a crab salad and a sea bream ceviche. The crab meat had been carefully picked from the crustacean and surprisingly it’s actually reassuring to hit the odd bit of crab exoskeleton to appreciate its freshness. The mango and avocado purée added some zestiness and fruitiness to the dish.
It’s hard to go wrong with sea bream ceviche as long as you have top quality suppliers. They just add some citrusy notes with lemon and some crunch with the cucumber cubes.
The main course was in the form of a winsome looking mackerel; it isn’t a fish I would normally order, but this version was firm and salivating. It tasted healthy and had substance with a decent portion of cherry tomatoes, black olives and cannellini beans.
What is highly recommended is to speak with their sommelier and ask him to help you with wine-matching with your food. They have a rotating list of 15 reds and 15 whites that are offered by the glass, carafe or bottle at exceptional prices. We tried some extremely quaffable white Rioja and Grüner Veltliner, which paired supremely well with our dishes.
To finish, I had one of the best desserts in a long time: English strawberries, berries, frozen yoghurt. It was presented in the form of almost a chilled strawberry soup, which was light and had a healthy dollop of frozen yoghurt in the middle. More venues should follow in their footsteps and offer healthier tasting desserts.