Lunch With Travel Onion and The Langham Hotel
On Friday, off I went to one of the most famous and luxurious hotels in London for lunch courtesy of The Langham Hotel and Travel Onion. It’s not often that I get invited to such illustrious events or places and believe me, it doesn’t get much better than this…
The invite read, ‘please arrive promptly at 12pm at the Artesian Bar located in the hotel. You will then be escorted to the Roux at Landau for lunch. After lunch you will be given a short tour of the hotel’. I may not be a foodie blogger, but even I have heard of the Roux, which has rapidly gained a very good reputation for the quality of it’s food. So as you can imagine I was looking forward to sampling some of the finest food out there and having a chance to be shown around a famous 5 star hotel. And of course finding out what Travel Onion were all about.
For a change I managed get some place on time and without any problems. The Langham Hotel is only a short stroll from Oxford Circus, but I doubt if many of their guests ever travel by tube! More like a chauffeur driven limousine. Since I have neither I made do with the London tube, which for a fine change was running smoothly. Seriously that was what I thought until a couple asked me for directions to the Langham, just beside the tube station when I was heading home…it’s a funny world sometimes.
From the second you walk through the entrance of the hotel you enter an amazing place. There is a classic feel, but it also feels modern, it is grand, luxurious and stunning. The marble walls, pillars and floors, along with the decor are pure class and sophistication, but it isn’t over the top. The staff and customer service are what you would expect from a 5 star hotel and a hotel with a reputation such as The Langham, where people expect not just good service, but exceptional service. That’s what you get here!
London’s oldest grand hotel recently underwent an £80 million refurbishment and having been in hotels that have spent twice as much, but don’t look half as good as the Langham, the owners really have overseen an exceptional job. Very impressive and it isn’t just how good the place looks, it is how good it feels to be there.
As previously mentioned the afternoon began in the Artesian bar which has been designed by David Collins, this is truly my kinda bar. It’s hard to describe what it looks like, but try Victorian with some Chinese influences. For some strange reason I started off with a glass of orange juice, instead of one of their legendary Rum cocktails. The night before in Brighton made me become teetotal for the day!
Along with some of London’s most popular bloggers, we were greeted by Brian Core Director of Communications for the hotel and Cal Simmons, Travel Onion founder. Travel Onion is a web site that features the World’s Best Travel Blogs, go check it out. There was a lot of passionate people, about what they do at the table, which made for a great afternoon. I could have happily spent a few hours relaxing in the Artesian bar, however the prospect of lunch at the internationally renowned Roux at the Lanau would have been too good to miss.
The Roux at The Landau is a Modern European/French restaurant that sees father and son Albert and Michel Roux Jr working together and even people that don’t know anything about fine dining, know about these guys. They are legends in the food world. Foodie bloggers dream about them! The head chef is a man who is making a big name for himself, Chris King.
My hands were nervously shaking as I thumbed through the à la carte menu and then the set menu which is an unbelievable £45 and is available at both lunch and dinner – would a barbarian like myself be able to understand a fine dining menu! After a lot of thought…and I really do mean a lot of thought I figured out what to have. There were so many things I was tempted to have.
I started off with something that I don’t particularly normally like, which was Cauliflower soup. Why you my ask, well it was to see if the kitchen at Roux could change my mind. And oh boy, they did. The soup was full of flavour and taste. Very nice. Next up was the Black Angus flat iron steak with stuffed cippollini onions and bordelaise sauce. Even as I write this my mouth is watering thinking about how good this tasted. The meat really was wonderful and full of flavour and everything was cooked to as close to perfection as I’m ever likely to get. Next was Rhubarb Cheesecake, which sure doesn’t look like or taste like any cheesecake that I have eaten before. It tasted as good as it looks. See the picture below, which was taken by The Wine Sleuth, and go check out her fantastic blog. And if I’m honest I wasn’t overly impressed with the cheese platter that I ended the meal with, but maybe that was just me…
I wish I could have sampled some of the many wines that were on the go but my body can only take so much alcohol in one week – from listening to our tables resident wine expert, The Wine Sleuth, there really was some amazing wines, which expertly matched the food.
The Roux at The Landau is all about quality food, fantastic service and on top of that the restaurant is truly a beautiful place to be. It is an elegant, classic and refined place to eat, and the service really is exquisitely fantastic. This is the sort of place to take your girl when you want to treat her or get into…her good books!
Our afternoon was meant to include a wee peek at some of the hotel rooms, the swimming pool and spa, but alas we ran out of time as Brian had to leave to arrange a room for an interview which was taking place at the hotel with a very, very high profile lady, whom I’m not at liberty to say who.
I don’t know where the time went to, as I headed down the stairs of The London Langham at 4.30pm…it sure had been an amazing event and take it from me this is one top quality hotel…