The Providores is a great place to go on a lazy Sunday for a pot of tea and a read of the papers. I have never eaten in the restaurant but I’m told that the food is brilliant.
Peter Gordon, fusian chef extraordinaire has just opened a brand new sister restaurant in Seven Dials called Kopapa. I went with a couple of friends on Monday evening for a few plates from the Tapas menu and a few glasses of wine.
A couple of us arrived at 6.30 and had a glass of bubbly and a bowl of Edamame while we waited. My initial thought was that the Edamame was double the price it should have been, or at least the bowl should have been twice the size. At £4.80, the profit margin must be huge!
When our friend arrived, we perused the menu and decided on 6 dishes. I have never been much of a fan of Tapas because I think it gives restaurants an excuse to charge £7 for 1/3 of what you’d get for a main meal. But everything on the menu sounded great so we ordered.
First came the bread ‘basket’ (more like bread in a pie dish) but the different types of bread were nice and fresh.
The next flurry of dishes arrived and the Chorizo Beignets with Salsa Verde were nice but reminded me of a glorified Potato Croquettes.
The Char-grilled Aubergine with Tamarind Caramel, Coriander, Pickled Ginger & Za’atar looked delish but I surrendered this to my friend who is a veggie in favour of the Chirozo and another meat dish.
The Polenta Chips and Guacamole was next – the Chips perfectly crunchy on the outside and fluffy on the inside. The Guacamole had a good lot of coriander in it, which is always a bonus.
The Kopapa Salmon Gravadlax with Yuzu Beetroot Salsa arrived and was lovely. I personally don’t think you can ever go wrong with ordering this dish. The dill was strong but it worked well with the sweetness of the beetroot.
The Five Spice & Cumin crumbed Butternut with Coconut Cucumber Raita was one of my favourite dishes. It was deep fried but reminded me of a tempura dish from one of my favourite Japanese restaurants. The Coconut Cucumber Raita was smooth and subtle but was perfectly matched.
Next came the Coconut Sticky Pork Ribs. The Coconut sauce was delicious, sticky, rich and there wasn’t too much of it! The ribs were tender and moreish.
Us girls have sweet tooth’s so decided to share a couple of puddings, the Chocolate Brownie and ‘Golden Crunch’ ice cream, which I’m told is called Hokey Pokey in Gordon’s home country New Zealand and the Pavlova Roulade stuffed with Blueberries, Dried Cherries and Pecans.
Both desserts were slightly disappointing considering the lovely Tapas dishes we had just eaten. My friends said that the Cinnamon in the Brownie was too overpowering, whereas I thought that the fruit in it let it down. The Pavlova Roulade wasn’t what we were expecting either – more of a Marshmallow than Meringue.
It was only a Monday evening but during the time that we were there (from 6.30 – 10.30pm) hardly anyone walked in. There were only two other tables dining and the rest were drinking teas and coffees. The décor is also interesting – I think that they have taken the fusion aspect and converted this into the decoration too! The floor was the best as it is old and rustic. The walls looked like a contestant from Robot Walls had been let loose on them and the white ceiling looked like something from the Dr Who set.
Maybe it’s too early to judge but I’ll be going back in the New Year later on in the week to see if the atmosphere has changed. It will be a shame if it hasn’t because the food is delicious and I’d like to go back just for that.
We did agree that it would be a great place to go in the summer as the doors will open wide onto the street and I imagine they’ll have tables and chairs on the roadside, right next to Seven Dials. It’s such a shame that summer is so far away…
32 – 34 Monmouth Street
London, UK WC2H 9HA
Tel: 020 7240 6076