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  • ack of atmosphere
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      09.10.2001 21:34
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      • "ack of atmosphere"

      At 150 St Vincent Street is Eurasia a restaurant which as the name implies is trying to be a fusion of European and Asian food, clever ha! However did they come up with that name? The reception is quite stylish and upon entering you know that some of the money you are paying is going towards the artwork on the wall and not just for the food. In my opinion not necessarily a good thing. The reception/bar area had comfy seating and glass top coffee tables being served by a bar man cum waiter who was attentive without being intrusive. Whilst waiting for colleagues to arrive I had a couple of tomato juices which were excellently prepared and not outrageously priced. The restaurant was quiet and the tables seemed to be laid out in a regular pattern, which gave it a slightly stuffy, hotel restaurant type feel. There was little atmosphere, which may have been because the place was empty, and we were seated at a seat in the window. Which offered a view of the road should the conversation flag, but was set back from the road so as to prevent passers-by staring at your food. We were shown to our table, which was spacious with no danger of knocking elbow with the person next to you. The linen was, as one would expect of an expensive restaurant; white and heavy and the settings simple and tasteful. The table was well lit (perhaps a little to well-lit) but we were not after a romantic atmosphere being a group of 7 male colleagues in our late 20s / early 30s. The menu consisted of eight or so starters and the same number of main courses. This didn’t however make it difficult to choose, although my original choice of monkfish starter was not on. I opted for the mixed starter, which was a bit of a mish-mash of items presented in a stack of bamboo steaming baskets. The mixed starters were a beef consommé (odd), a greek kebab type thingy (even odder), spring roll, dim sum parcel and a palate cleansing melon to finish off. This was not quite
      the fusion I was expecting, being just bits and pieces. Others starters included melon and sorbet (we all joked that Stuart had got his pudding first as the sorbet was presented in scoops like ice cream) and pea soup. These items all seemed expensive as two courses was priced at £24.45, and £3 extra for my mixed starters. By my reckoning that made a bowl of pea soup about £7. The mains came a respectable amount of time later and were pretty good. I had ordered cod and it had been poached or slow-cooked and was in a tower on a prawn risotto cakes and supported admirably by some ‘oven-dried’ tomatoes. The combination was very good, but yet again not fusion food. Now maybe I was just expecting a more interesting combination of flavours and had read more into the title of the restaurant than perhaps the chef had in mind. The rest of the mains were good; steak and gressingham duck, they were well presented and it was fairly late so were devoured in little time. The wine list was vast and as I know nothing about wine we chose a Chilean Red and a South African white which were good and in the £20-£25 range. In summary the food was good, but was not the fusion dishes I was expecting. The atmosphere was a little formal and in my opinion the restaurant itself was overpriced. People may argue that it was pearls before swine, but I didn’t notice the difference between Eurasia and other good restaurants at half the price. It was fission food not fusion food!

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