All that Jazz

You may well be familiar with The Savoy Jersey and like me, you’ll know it as a 4-star boutique hotel in St Helier, but what you might not know is that it was originally an old Victorian house constructed in 1840 and turned into a hotel in 1968.  But it isn’t just a hotel, it’s also home to both the exclusive Restaurant 1840, named after the year the original house was constructed, and the fantastic Roberto’s Jazz Bar.

It was dining in Restaurant 1840 that I was there to experience so my dining and partner and I settled in on a Friday evening ready to sample this little gem.  Before dinner, we dipped into the Roberto’s Jazz Bar for one of their infamous gin and tonics. This place is famed for having the largest gin selection in the island, I’m talking over 100 different makes, but worry not if you aren’t a gin fan they have an extensive cocktail list too. After our aperitif, we moved into the restaurant, a funky well lit room which seats up to 40.

We were presented with a fantastic seasonal à la carte menu and got down to choosing our starters.  Chef and his team celebrate the island’s seasonal ingredients, ensuring they feature in each of the dishes on the menu and they only use locally sourced fish and shellfish.

I opted for beetroot, a personal favourite, which was accompanied by salty crumbly feta cheese.  These were salt-baked, gently pickled and a variety of colours gracing my plate, all of them delicious.  My dining partner had scallops, which he said were cooked to perfection and accompanied by delicately deboned chicken wings and roscoff onions, the dish certainly looked and smelt enticing.

Next we moved on to our main course, another delicious pair of dishes. Despite us both being drawn to the beef dish on the menu, I opted for fish as my main course. I was presented with a perfectly cooked dish of cod, accompanied by cauliflower and almonds, both of which provided a delightful flavour and texture combination which allowed the cod to sing.  He had the beef dish.  I won’t lie it was a tough one to give up (I always like to try as many dishes on the menu as possible so won’t double up), a perfectly cooked fillet served with braised short rib and two types of potatoes; it was epic.  I did, of course, sample a few morsels for research purposes, and it was superb.

Moving on to dessert, a dish which, in my opinion, can make or break a meal.  I have really fond memories of some incredible desserts that I’ve eaten over the years, those that linger with you long after you’ve finished your final mouthful.  Well, chef’s take on a rhubarb fool is firmly on the list now.  So far from what I was expecting this was definitely my standout dish of the evening.  I’m a huge fan of rhubarb and this superb pudding didn’t disappoint; the perfect balance of flavours and colours, it was so good that I genuinely wanted to lick my plate (a stray finger may have made it onto my plate before I got told off!).  My dining partner also enjoyed his pudding;  another winning seasonal combination of apple and blackberries, compressed into a terrine and served with delicate buttery crumble-esque crumbs.

As you’d imagine from the home of an impressive gin collection, Restaurant 1840 has an equally notable wine list, and there is always someone on hand who can help you choose a bottle should you wish.  They are also on hand to deal with any dietary requirements that you may have. Plenty of parking is available so there is simply no excuse not to book a table and go and try it for yourselves.