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Review of Michelin-starred Galvin La Chapelle

Creme brulee with truffle and brie from Galvin La Chapelle

Galvin La Chapelle is a one Michelin-starred French restaurant situated in London’s Spitalfields, near Liverpool Street. It is part of the Galvin restaurant group, which is a family-owned collection of restaurants by the Michelin-starred brothers Chris and Jeff Galvin.

This was my second visit to Galvin La Chapelle, having been for lunch many years ago. I do love a bit of fine dining! I chose it because I had received a Red Letter Days voucher and I could redeem a three course lunch with a glass of champagne for two for £99, which I thought for a Michelin-starred restaurant was excellent value. I invited my friend Shelley along to enjoy the lunch with me. So here’s my review of Galvin La Chapelle.

Festive menu at Galvin La Chapelle

The atmosphere

We had booked lunch just after Christmas so the restaurant was decorated accordingly and was very festive. Even the entrance to the restaurant was a festive showstopper!

Entrance to Galvin La Chapelle with a festive garland

There was a ginormous Christmas tree near the bar and at the entrance to the dining area. It was beautifully decorated and we had the perfect view of it from our table. If you visit during the Christmas period you won’t be disappointed as it’s suitably festive!

Christmas tree at Galvin La Chapelle

You may be forgiven for thinking that the restaurant is housed in a former church or chapel as ‘Chapelle’ in French means ‘chapel’ and, with it’s high windows and stone and brick walls, it could have been one. It’s not a former chapel but rather a former school and the building is Grade 2 listed.

The decor at Galvin La Chapelle

The restaurant oozes elegance. From the stunning artwork throughout the restaurant to the stylish silver Champagne coolers to the smartly dressed servers. It’s one of those restaurants that is elegant but not stuffy or pretentious. The dress code at Galvin La Chapelle is smart causal, not lounge suit.

Silver Champagne cooler at Galvin La Chapelle

The food at Galvin La Chapelle

Of course, with one Michelin star, expectations are high. As I’d already visited Galvin La Chapelle once before, I know that the food would be on point. Here’s what we had.

The starter

As we had a voucher for a three course meal, we were given the Festive Menu du Chef. It consisted on three starters, three mains and three desserts to choose from. There was an additional ‘dessert’ of a cheese board, which had a supplement of £14.

Shelley and I chose exactly the same dishes! For starters we both had the Landes foie gras parfait with mulled wine, quince chutney and pain d’epices. The other options were gnocchi with a Jerusalem artichoke velouté, miso and radicchio and cured Loch Duart salmon with horseradish kimchi and squid ink aioli.

The foie gras parfait was absolutely delicious, smooth and delicate. Foie gras can be very rich but as a parfait it’s rather light. The pairing of mulled wine and quince jelly worked beautifully. My only criticism is that the spiced pieces of bread were very soft and I feel if they had been toasted it would’ve given a bit more texture to the dish.

Foie gras parfait starter from Galvin La Chapelle

The main course

For the main I was tempted by the Delica pumpkin risotto with Camembert, hazlenut praline and finger lime as it sounded fabulous. As I had meat for the starter, I went for the Cornish Cod with chestnut Mousseline, potato rosti, cavolo nero, wild mushroom and a vin jaune sauce. The other option was honey glazed duck Magret with heritage carrots, watercress and carrot ketchup.

The cod was perfectly cooked and the potato rosti was delicious. I love chestnuts as not only are they super tasty, they definitely evoke winter and Christmas vibes.

Cod with chestnut mousseline from Galvin La Chapelle

The dessert course

I have to say, I wasn’t enamored by the desserts. There was a very festive dessert option of Christmas panettone pudding with coffee, mascarpone, chantilly and candied orange however we had a very similar pudding on Christmas day. Plus I’m not a fan of coffee in dessert.

There was also a tropical option called ‘passion fruit martini’ which had passion fruit jelly, mango sorbet and martini foam. Can’t say that was floating my boat as it felt more like a summer dessert. So I opted for the Truffle Brie de Meaux crème brûlée with tipsy pear, toasted hazlenut and whiskey caramel.

If you don’t have much of a sweet tooth then this is the perfect dessert for you as it wasn’t very sweet at all. It was definitely more of a savoury dessert and is a good alternative to the cheese board. It was very tasty!

Creme brulee with truffle and brie from Galvin La Chapelle

My review of Galvin La Chapelle

Galvin La Chapelle offers fine dining in an elegant setting. The menu is imaginative, the food is delicious and the presentation is refined. The service is professional and warm without being too attentive. Just what you’d expect from a Michelin-starred restaurant. The three course menu with Champagne was excellent value. I’d definitely recommend dining at Galvin La Chapelle.

Kirsty Marrins

Reader, writer, occasional runner, travel lover.



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