From Parisian market to plate

REVIEW: Côte Brasserie

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Ravioli made with goat cheese, ricotta and walnuts. Picture: Jess Warren

FRENCH CUISINE is often considered to be of the highest quality in the world, with chef’s across the world inspiring to train in the capital city. 

So upon visiting Côte Brasserie in Wokingham, a quality dining experience was anticipated.

Welcomed first with a French Martini and Kir Royale, priced at £6.95 and £4.95 respectively, Manager Juliette told us about how produce is sourced for the restaurant.

With all produce coming fresh from a Parisian market, authenticity is at the heart of each dish. However, that doesn’t stop the menu from experimenting with some French classics. 

Altered seasonally, the menu at Côte Brasserie changes four times a year, in order to reflect the growing seasons. 

Beginning first with an appetiser, a Pissaladiere was brought to the table. This warm flatbread was generously coated with caramelised onions, reblochon cheese and finished with a sprinkling of thyme. At £4.95, the sharing bread is ideal to whet the appetite, and hints at the flavourful meal to follow. 

Starters of Steak Tartare (£7.25) and French Onion Soup (£5.95) were brought to the table next. The steak was perfectly balanced with the salty, acidity of the capers and shallots. Presented with warm bread, the dish certainly melted in the mouth. 

The richness of the soup failed to disappoint, with a careful balance of umami flavours combined with a sourdough croute and melted comté cheese offering a dish reminiscent of home cooking. 

These were followed by Pan Roasted Salmon Supreme with fennel new potatoes, tomato concasse and dill hollandaise. We added a side of creamed spinach (£3.95) to the dish, which complemented the perfectly crisp skin of the salmon.

Ravioli made with goat cheese, ricotta and walnuts was also brought to the table. The pasta dish was served with roasted red and yellow peppers, black olives, garlic and fresh chives in a stock-like sauce that lifted the cheesy ravioli away from any potential heaviness. 

Both mains came from the Prestige Set Menu which runs from noon until close on the weekdays, with the exception of Friday, when it finishes at 7pm. The set menu is priced with two courses at £15.95 and three courses for £18.95

Finally, the meal was concluded with a generous serving of Pain Perdu, a brioche-based bread and butter pudding, served with vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce (£5.95) and a Chocolate Fondant with vanilla ice cream (£6.10). Both desserts were rather indulgent, with the Pain Perdu taking centre stage for the addition of brioche to the home-cooking classic.

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