After my flirtations with Greece and Persia, it seems like I’m turning back to French cuisine. Visiting Casse- Croute makes you feel like you’re dining in a French village. It may not be the cheapest, but it’s not ridiculously overpriced either.
Casse- Croute, simply put, is fab. Situated in the thriving area of Bermondsey, it is small, and authentic. The chalkboard menu (changed daily) only has nine things on it, everything is in French and it feels like you’re being invited into someone’s dining room.
It was a hot summer’s night when we visited and the place was crowded, despite it being a Monday (it was also my 31st birthday).
The starter was a glorious Oeuf with salmon, which was a pleasant surprise.
I could swear I had the duck for my main course but the picture doesn’t look like duck:
And the dessert, a gateaux, was absolutely delicious.
When people say they know a great French place in Bermondsey, this is that place.
Bellanger has the feel of a neighbourhood place, rather than a trendy London eaterie. That might be due to its location in the twinkly, cosy section of Upper Street in Islington. Apparently Bellanger is ‘inspired by the Alsatian brasseries of Paris’. If you’re not down with Alsatian dining, then expect to be a little more familiar by the end of your visit.
During my visit with friends a few weeks ago (Bellanger is great for dinner with friends), I had the quiche to start. It was one of the most divine quiches I have tasted. Light and extremely fluffy, it tasted like (cliche alert) clouds in my mouth.
This was followed by the duck for main course. Even though it wasn’t the best duck I’ve ever eaten, it was rich and citrus-y. It was slightly dry, but full of flavour.
Bellanger is sophisticated, but cosy, with excellent service. I’m adding it to my list of good French places in London.
Pain au chocolat and latte
Could pre-Christmas coffee and pastries with friends be any more decadent?