I love that restaurants are still acknowledging the fact that brunch starts the weekend life (particularly Sundays in my case), and that there’s more to the menu beyond poached eggs and avocado toasts. When Chotto Matte invited me to try their new menu, I was rather intrigued. Though I sometimes go to Chotto Matte for pre-dinner drinks, it’s been a while since the last time I actually ate there.
The £50 brunch menu includes a tasting menu (there’s a veggie option too), a cocktail or beer, plus half a bottle of prosecco or wine. If you wanna go for a tasting menu and three non-alcoholic cocktails instead, that’ll be £45. We’re obviously revelers so we went for the first option.
C went for the Pisco Sour and I went for the Pimm’s Cocktail which was refreshing and reminiscent of the Summer we Londoners hoped for.
The first thing that came was a sea bass ceviche with Tiger’s milk, some sweet potato, Peruvian corn, coriander and chive oil. I was pleasantly surprised by this dish. The fish was fresh and the balance of the Tiger’s milk was spot on, if almost an awakening.
Next up was a bowl of nigiri. There’s tuna, salmon, tamago, scallop, and yellowtail. I was surprised by the dainty pieces simply because these were, in my opinion, perfectly sized nigiri. The proportion of rice to fish was just about right and each bite was flavoursome and delicious.
What came next was described as a “Nikkei Sepia” on the menu or calamari with some pepper emulsion. What our server told us was that it was prawn tempura. I was confused. It definitely looked like squid, unless they were mutated prawns with tentacles?
Nevermind. I did enjoy these, I have to say. They were crispy and moreish, plus the kick from the spiced batter was reason enough to gulp cocktails away.
Cocktails and starters finished, we were ready for our mains. Flutes were poured with bubbly as we waited for the mains from the robata. And then re-filled. And then topped up again. I think we waited for about twenty minutes til the mains finally came, but they did look pretty good so I kept everything crossed that they were worth it.
We started with the asado de tira, a dish of beef short rib and purple potato with teriyaki jus. The short rib was incredibly tender – like seriously flaky tender. It was on the leaner side of short rib, which I like, but the flavour was still quite decent. The purple potato was a good starch to have with this, but I recommend you get yourselves a bowl of steamed rice, too.
The pollo den miso, or chicken marinated in miso, was probs my fave of the three. I could care less about the daikon relish, to be honest, because the chicken was nicely grilled and had enough flavour to stand out.
To hit the 5-a-day spot, some sake sautéed broccoli was served with a yuzu sauce. This was just okay for me.
I love the look of dessert platters, don’t you? We had a selection of mochi ice cream ball, passion fruit brûlée and a choccy pot
This was my fave, because it was rich, indulgent, and of course I have a bias towards chocolate!
The brûlée was decent too, although I prefer the traditional flavoured creme brûlée.
The mochi balls were fun to eat. We had mango (my fave), matcha and yuzu flavoured ones.
Verdict for Chotto Matte Brunch
I think for £50, this brunch menu was quite decent and you really get your money’s worth with all the booze you get. I was full, but not uncomfortable, and it was a welcome break from all the eggy menus around. I think if you’re looking for something leaning towards a lunch menu, then this would be something I’d recommend.
Food-wise, I think Chotto Matte has improved since the last time I visited, so that’s good. The balance of the sauces was quite nice and I was very surprised that I liked it enough.
My big qualm was the timing. Now I do love a long, slow brunch, but I like it when the food flow is constant too. I think the wait between the starters and the main was slightly too long – even tables next to ours were slightly getting impatient and I felt the vibe was a big, “What Now?”. I hope it was just a one-off, because overall it was rather decent and the servers were pretty nice.
Would I go back? Yeah I don’t see why not, although I am now more curious about their ala carte options knowing their dishes have better balance! However, I’d recommend this brunch for those who want to try something different from the usual eggs, pancakes, bacon brunch menus around.