There’s been yet another remake of the site on the corner of Bridge Street and Thompson’s Lane. As Garfunkels it was not worth going to. As the Filling Station it had the advantage that, even when everywhere else was full, you could always find space to go sip high priced cocktails. As Edwin’s it combined high prices with unreliable (and usually slow) service. And they did have the irritating habit if you tried to book for 7.30 of offering you only 6.0 or 9.0 pm. This is always a bad marker – it means they put their convenience ahead of customer satisfaction. Of course, since 6.0 is too early and 9.0 is usually too late, on the rare occasions I did go there, I simply walked in at 7.30 to vast numbers of empty tables.
However, that is history, and it is now reborn as Cote. Paul wrote it up already, but this was my first visit. I have to say that it is streets better. The food is very much more interesting and more skillfully prepared and presented, and the service is good. I began with something light, a pissaladiere with anchovy. This was a kind of oval flat bread spread with anchovy paste and olives, and cut into strips. It was deliciously spicy. I went on to have their feuilleté Provencal, a warm puff pastry with ratatouille, goats cheese, rocket and with a black olive, caper and basil dressing. Again, very tasty and a good balance of ingredients. The wine was a French sauvignon blanc, chosen because they appear to have no New World wines at all on their list. However, that said, it was pleasant enough. So a promising beginning at Cote, and I’ll revisit it soon to check on some of their other dishes.