Among my collection of menus are two that are printed onto silk. They are menus celebrating the tenth anniversary of The Waterside Inn, Bray on Thames, England and the fifteenth anniversary of Le Gavroche, London, England.
The menus were presented to me as a gift by famed chef Albert Roux when we opened our joint venture restaurant, Michael's Waterside, in 1984.
The Waterside Inn has been a Three Starred Michel Restaurant since 1985. From the Waterside Inn web page: "The Waterside Inn has a global clientele and international staff. No matter how far you travel to visit us you are always assured a warm welcome in relaxed riverside surroundings with Michelin-starred cuisine to equal anywhere in the world.
The Roux Family
The name is a culinary legend. Michel with his older brother Albert opened the original Le Gavroche Restaurant in Lower Sloane Street, London in 1967. The address was imprinted immediately onto the gourmets and gourmands across the country quickly followed by the opening of The Waterside Inn in September 1972.
Michel has personally been awarded an honorary OBE, and is the proud holder of France’s premier order, Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur. All of this has earned him his reputation as a “living legend” among chefs around the world.
Today the sons run the flagships. Albert’s son, Michel Roux Jnr at Le Gavroche and Michel’s son Alain is Chef Patron of The Waterside Inn.
Bray village has a long and well documented history with notable inhabitants such as the Vicar of Bray, King Charles II, Nell Gwynn and Thomas Hughes (author of Tom Brown’s School Days). The present Waterside Inn used to be known as The George and has variously been a pub and also a tea room.
Since opening its doors in September 1972 the Waterside Inn gained its first Michelin star in 1974 when the guide first came out. In 1977 the second star, and then in 1985 the ultimate 3 stars which have been retained to date."
Lattice of Salmon and Brill with Ginger
Breast of Duckling with Figs from Provence
Lemon Tart and Black Currant "Délice"
Coffee and Petit Fours
Le Gavroche is an iconic restaurant, now some 40 plus years old. It set the standard for superb dining in the U.K. from the day it opened in 1967. The original location at 61-63 Lower Sloan Street was a rather small restaurant, seating no more than 50 guests. The wine cellar was under the banquettes in the dining room. The kitchen was like working in a ships galley and was very cramped with sixteen in the brigade working in less than 500 square feet of space. In spite of that, Le Gavroche had accumulated two Michel Stars by the time I went to work there in 1981. Visit the web page for a fascinating tour of one of the great restaurants of the world.
Foie Gras Cooked Ballotine Style
Lobster Mousse with Champagne
Thinly Sliced Braised Beef and Vegetables
Shortbreads with Raspberries
Coffee and Petit Fours