Far too often, I end up leaving restaurants that serve sharing dishes feeling lethargic and bloated, as I always make the mistake of over ordering since the dishes are small. However, this wasn’t the case for modern European restaurant Primeur which specialises in small sharing plates and the finest wines from around the globe.
Located on a quiet, suburban street near the up and coming area of Stoke Newington, Primeur is quite a difficult restaurant to find if you are visiting for the first time. I don’t mean that it is hard to get to, I mean that it maintains the exterior of what once used to be there; a car garage named “Barnes Motors.”
It isn’t until you see candlelit tables and wine glasses clinking that you realise it is in fact a cosy little restaurant.
Similarly to my favourite spot in East London Marmelo, the menu at Primeur changes daily. Whilst some may see this as a risk, I think this signifies great things about a restaurant. This is because you can guarantee that everything is going to be fresh as the menu is most likely influenced by what produce is available on the day.
Shortly after being seated in the intimate, rustic establishment, we were given a few of the beautifully aged wines to taste, and a plate of soft, warm bread and butter. What better to go with this than some cured ham from Teruel, Spain?
Perfectly sliced and not too slimey. A simple but fulfilling starter. Next up was the duck rillettes, cornichons and toast.
I’m not normally a fan of things like Pâtés, but mixed with the pickled cornichons, this dish really worked and lessened the fishy taste of the duck.
When visiting tapas-like restaurants, each dish comes out as soon as it is cooked despite how heavy or light it is. Contrastingly, what I liked about Primeur was the fact that they made the effort to serve each dish in the order reflected by the menu: light to heavy. Therefore the next plate was slightly heavier than our previous dishes.
When it first came out, I thought it looked a bit like pastrami, so was expecting the onglet to be cold and quite chewy. After having the cold, duck rillettes, I didn’t fancy more cold meat, so was delighted to discover that the onglet was in fact warm. Served on a bed of crunchy onions, the succulent strips of steak contrasted beautifully. They were also given a unique taste from the sweet yet sour pickled walnuts. A lovely but completely misleading dish!
The boston butt. What is this you ask? It’s the American name for a cut of pork that comes from the upper part of the shoulder. Lined with crusty, flavoursome rind, the pork paired perfectly with the oriental pak choi and bitter leaves. Oh and not forgetting my favourite herb dill. If you haven’t tried dill before, put a bit in your next salad and thank me later.
Whilst these flavours really worked, I think it could have been elevated by putting these ingredients together as a burger or small sliders.
Last but not least, the orange and chocolate tart – tantalising tangy goodness! It was like a giant jaffa cake but much more smooth and rich. The best way to end a great meal and I didn’t feel like I was put in a food coma for once!
Overall, I would highly recommend Primeur as it’s not your average restaurant. Admittedly, I had to google what half of the options on the menu were, however once explained, you’ll recognise the dishes and begin to salivate!
Whether you are after a romantic meal with your loved one, or some good food and wine with a larger group, Primeur will deliver. Oh and by “good wine,” I mean they really know their stuff. I’ve never been to a restaurant and genuinely enjoyed the taste of red wine until I’d visited here.
If an amazing glass of red and some red meat isn’t enough to get you to visit, then I don’t know what will. Get #discoveringdifference with Primeur now http://primeurn5.co.uk/menu/