Le Bouchon Breton
8 Horner Square
Old Spitalfield Market
Date of Last Visit: Sunday, November 30th, 2008
The Victim: Me
The Damage: £20
The Background: The saga of my hot water heater continues. The manufacturer is sending someone out to take a look. He is, they tell me, scheduled to arrive between 9 and 9.
Yes, you read that correctly. He'll be there at some point after 9 a.m. and before 9 p.m.
I'm a prisoner in my own home. And I have NOTHING to eat.
I imagine the worst, me wasting away–starving–in my flat until 8:45 p.m., only to have him arrive at 9 p.m. and discover he's missing the parts he needs.
But, to my surprise, he shows up at 12:30 p.m. and is gone by 1 p.m. and my hot water has been plentiful and, well, hot ever since.
So it's time for lunch.
The Entrance: I wander around and around Spitalfields, looking for Le Bouchon Breton. It's upstairs. So look up! I enter and everyone is SO happy to see me. There are a lot of staff at Le Bouchon. There's someone to greet me. Someone to show me to my table. Someone to give me the menu and explain the specials. Someone to take my food order. Someone to take my bread order. Someone to take my drink order. I'm serious.
But you know what…they are all so darned CHEERFUL that I cannot help but be charmed. Some of the most cheerful service I've ever had in London. (The vast majority of staff seem to be French.)
The Food: French onion soup is nice. It's better than average. There are lots of onions and lots of cheese and the crouton is really toasted so it doesn't dissolve too quickly. My croque monsieur is thick and cheesy, although the ham seems a bit supermarketish in its thinness. I would have liked the ham to have been a bit meatier. The wine server suggests a Rioja to accompany my two dishes, which I was a bit surprised about, given that he appeared to be French and we were, after all, in a French restaurant. But it did the trick.
The Goodbye: As I went to leave, not one but four (if not five) separate members of staff bid me adieu. Not bad.
The Loos: Had a Dyson Airblade.
The Verdict: I was charmed by the staff. The food was okay. I would give this another shot.