Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Donald Russell, The Butchers at The Balcon

Donald Russell, the Scottish butchers, was set up about forty years ago when it only supplied the trading industry. As a butcher they don't just supply beef, but any meat you can think of including poultry, fish, game, ready dishes, pasta, meal planner boxes and speciality breads and quiches. Nowadays, their products are available to buy online. You have a choice whether you have your order sent chilled or frozen. They hold the Royal Warrant, supplying the Royal household.
I was lucky enough to be invited together with Jeanne and Sabrina to sample their delicious meat at a dinner held at The Balcon, situated in the Sofitel St James, London one of many high-end luxury hotel and restaurants they supply.   We were told that all their animals are of UK origin with 80% coming from Scotland farms using the highest  quality control,  maturity and complete traceability.  Donald Russell's site is complete with tips, recipes and videos. 

The Venue:
The Balcon



Tasting of Welsh Trealy Farm charcuterie
 The wine of choice was Camino Romano, a  rich red purple color wine with a complex and  intense fruity aroma of red and black fruits. Full bodied, elegant, clean finish with a touch of oakiness. Perfect match to our red meat.
 The star of the night was the scrumptious and succulent rib of beef, which was expertly carved and served by the executive chef, Vincent Menager who previously worked at Brasserie Roux and before that with Frederic Anton and Alain Ducasse in France.  The rib of beef screamed 'eat me now'. It was so tender that looked like butter to the touch of the knife. The luscious bĂ©arnaise sauce that accompanied the meat was smooth, creamy and herby.  The fresh tarragon complemented the meat perfectly.  The fries was presented in lovely mini fryer's baskets, which I have seen before and I still think is a rather cute way to present them.  
I can't wait try Donald Russell's online products and service.
Thanks Jeanne for letting me use her fab pictures ©J Horak-Druiff (aka @Cooksisterblog)

Glorious meat!
Deserts were delectable too, specially the 'cheese-cake' filled bugnes (beignets):
dark chocolate souffle was light and fondant-like served with custard based pistachio ice-cream:
 
Fresh plum tart tartin with creamy clotted cream ice cream: 
Red berries and almond cake
 


After dinner Jeanne and I had the pleasure to be shown The Balcon,  which is the balcony that overlooks and gives the restaurant its name and where a massive fridge holds all the finest, rare and expensive champagnes available for sale at this establishment. My kind of fridge! 

St. James bar and The Balcon are both very relaxing.  The bar has a 1920's 'Coco Chanel' feel and the restaurant's white walls and double height ceilings make the room bright and airy. Fine refined French and British fusion fare can be found at The Balcon's menu. The service was attentive, friendly, very accommodating and impeccably well mannered.


Another lovely review from my gorgeous friend and dining companion that evening : Cooksister
Hot&Chilli was a guest of Donald Russell, The Balcon and WildCard PR
All pictures by Hot&Chilli, unless otherwise stated.

4 comments:

Katia said...

wow, that sounds amazing and definitely top quality... now I'm checking their products available on line! Thanks Rosana.

Rosana said...

Hi Katia, I am ordering some steaks. Seriously delicious meat.

Jeanne said...

OMG those steaks were good...!!! It was such a fun evening of good food and good company :)

Rosana said...

Hi Jeanne, great fun indeed! see you soon. x

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