“ Address: 27-29 Endell Street / Covent Garden / London / WC2H 9BA / Telephone: 020 7836 4616 „
You'll have to bear with me on this review in terms of details, as I did actually visit Octave Restaurant in Covent Garden a while ago - but surely the fact that I have decided to review it a way down the line is testament to the quality of the food, and the night out.
I live in Birmingham but have always felt a pull towards London and so do tend to go there as much as I can. On this particular occasion, I had gone with my boyfriend for his 25th birthday. We looked on the Top Table website to find a nice place to go for dinner, and Octave caught our eye as it claimed to offer dinner and a fantastic night out with live jazz music in one.
And we weren't disappointed.
Octave is about a 5 minute walk from Covent Garden tube station, right in the centre. When you enter, you're greeted with a long and narrow restaurant with a bar on your left and places for those who come for a drink to sit and stand on the right. Move down a bit further and you walk into the restaurant area, with a stage at the end of the room. It's a nice amalgamation of a bar and a restaurant with one spilling into the other, but not in an obtrusive way. The décor is soft lighting, reds and purples with cleanly laid out white tables.
We had to pay £5 each as a cover for the live music, which doesn't seem so steep when you think that Pizza Express in Soho can charge up to £20 cover for their live jazz nights. It was well worth it as the music was great. The act came on around 9am and stayed until closer to midnight, playing old favourites and some more modern songs as well. It was a fantastic atmosphere, with the bar filling up whilst we ate making the whole place busy and lively. There is a small dancefloor close to the stage although unfortunately was not made use of on the night we went.
As it was for a birthday I asked in advance for a good table, and for once, they actually listened and we had a great seat, close to the front but quite secluded also. The food and wine was really good. We ordered a bottle of Chilean Sauvignon Blanc which was at the top of the menu. I tend to be of the thinking that anything at the top of wine lists are not great which is something I am attempting to overcome, but this was brilliant - a real traditional Chliean white wine. I had a starter of antipasti and olive tapenade and a main of rib eye steak, cooked perfectly to order (medium rare those who might be wondering). Unfortunately too full for pudding! The menu was a European fusion, from Italian to French and not badly priced - I do believe my starter was around £6 and the main was around £15. The service also was excellent. We had one waiter for the whole time who was attentive and was always there to hand without being "in your face" as it were.
The other thing I must mention was the cocktails. Apparently Octave is renowned for their cocktails, boasting a menu of over 10 pages ranging from traditional through to signature. And I must say, my boyfriend and I sampled quite a few! The prices again weren't bad for central London, probably ranging from £6 through to £10 for the champagne based ones.
Usually I would fault a restaurant in one way or another in a review but unfortunately I am unable to this time! I guess the music could have lasted longer, but that's possibly scraping the barrel. It's a great place - the atmosphere is relaxed and friendly, the food was great and excellent value for Covent Garden. The whole dinner came to around £120 for two people including a lot of wine and cocktails. We will certainly visit again.
Only the finest ingredients are used to prepare fresh dishes on our menu, which changes regularly. Match a perfect cocktail from our extensive bar menu and sit back, relax and enjoy the atmosphere!