Historical version 10 of Brasserie Vacherin, CR0 1DP
Like Brasserie Vacherin, this one is more relaxed than his Chiswick restaurant; for example, the menu is a single unbound sheet of paper. The food has a French influence, and basically consists of fish dishes and grilled meats. They also serve breakfast and brunch from 10am on weekends (as of June 2012).
Kake, bob, and several others visited on a Tuesday evening in October 2012 as a pre-booked group. Kake's starter of tuna tartare was overly mushy, but another diner's potted mackerel was pretty good, served at just the right temperature and incorporating just the right amount of butter. Kake's main was one of the day's specials: pollock with fennel fronds. The fish itself was great, with a lovely crispy skin, but the sauce had too much acidity (even for Kake, who has been known to drink vinegar neat) and the fennel fronds were rather too plentiful given they appeared to be either almost or completely raw. A side dish of sea vegetables (seaweed) had good flavour but was rather chewy and could perhaps have benefited from longer cooking. Service was good — welcoming without being overly familiar, and solicitous without being hovery — though they were a little slow to replenish water glasses towards the end of the meal. Music was playing throughout our visit, perhaps a little louder than ideal for conversation.
bob, elvum, Martin, Northern Steve, and Bethan paid an earlier visit on a Thursday evening in April 2009. While the restaurant was moderately busy, they easily found a table for us. bob had the yellowfin tuna tartare (£8.25) to start. It was made of good quality tuna, but I felt it lacked flavour. There was wasabi on the side but not nearly enough for my taste (that may just be me, though). For my main I had the cassoulet with octopus and ham hock (£12). This was really good; the octopus was succulent and tender, and the ham hock was pretty good too. A side order of sprouting broccoli (£3.50) was fine. Apple crumble (£6) to follow was adequate. The wines we had were fine. They offer several by the glass or carafe. We were brought two large jugs of tap water without any fuss.
Accessibility: A tiny step and then a ramp to get in. There is an accessible toilet, but like the other toilets it's located up one step and then down another.