Ducksoup, a 40 cover datenight-ish Soho gem is run by Clare Lattin, Rory McCoy and Julian Biggs. All alumni of Hix Restaurants – they have wandered the world, discovering many cooking styles, before coming back to get to work. We are the beneficiaries of their travels. They been doing their thing since September 2011, so you can call it a Soho stalwart. When we walked through the heavy trapped blue curtains, we got candlelight, white distressed brick and a counter top for dining. It’s flanked with tables for deux and there is Technics record player that sooth out the snap cackle and pop of vinyl. Of course they have a shelf filled with their cookbooks, along with natural wine and black boards telling you what they want to cook for you that day.
From the “kitchen” section of the menu we ordered the spiced carrot fritters £8.50 with coriander and a dollop of labneh giving it’s creamy zing. The dish was full of crunch, sweetness and warmth, it’s simple craftsmanship is impressive.
The sour dough £2.50 here was exemplary. There was a snap in the crust with a lacy dough sturdy enough to take lashings of their lustful room temperature butter – we ordered two lots.
Market pickles £3.50 were from what I gather the stem part from a cabbage of sorts with romanesco broccoli. They had a pleasing tongue pucker with a balance sweetness. Too often pickles can be too sour or too sweet, these were just right.
Then came the charred lamb breast with burnt January King cabbage and mint yogurt £10.50. This dish was all about the smoky notes and tastes like it’s been cooked on a Greek island with the dulcet tones of the sea not too far away.
Better still was the beautifully fresh roast hake £19 with charred cubes of earthy celeriac, lardons and tarragon. All I ask is that the fish to be cooked for another 60 seconds so that I can prise the flesh off the bone, instead some of the prized bits were raw and stuck.
When did I go? Dec 2017
The damage: Expect to pay £35 per head with a carafe
The good: I really enjoyed my time here at Ducksoup with its laid-back bistro feel. There’s quality plonk and lovely food conceived from a global larder, all to be enjoyed with the crackle and pop of vinyl in the background.
The bad: Don’t expect culinary cartwheels but cleverly made, simply hewn goodness made with quality ingredients.
Would I go again? Yes
Address: 41 Dean St, Soho, London W1D 4PY