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Monday, 26 July 2010

Moro: Deliciousness squared

34-36 Exmouth Market, EC1R 4QE
tel: +44 (0)20 7833 8336

Usually I write my reviews in chronological order, but just this time, let's begin at the end of the night first. The party of six of us gleefully watched the waitress open a bottle of Pedro Ximenex sherry. We did not need to be consuming any more alcohol, as we had already polished off a bottle of bubbles and three bottles of wine between us. But we drank anyway because we were celebrating the birthday of a good friend and then end of a FANTASTIC dinner. Cigars followed the sherry, and hangovers followed the next day. It was a fabulous night and all of us rolled out of the restaurant feeling happy, well fed and well drunk. So back to the beginning. We started with a bottle of Spanish cava which was deliciously fresh and dry. Though our menus boasted mouth-watering starters such as jamon with fresh figs (£8.50) and pan fried morcilla with broad beans and mint (£8.50), our group opted for the tapas menu for more of a round-robin nibble. Highlights included the fried chorizo (£4.50) which was rich and oozing with lovely red oils, babagahoush (£4) which went down a treat on the fresh sourdough bread and the piquillo peppers (£4) which were perfectly salted and had just the right amount of bite.
For the mains, we went back to the dinner menu. I chose the seared wild salmon (above) with green alioli, new potatoes and grilled courgette salad (£19.50). The salmon was a beautiful light pink on the inside and crispy golden brown on the outside. The green alioli was the perfect compliment and stole the show. After I had mopped up my salmon in the basil and garlic goodness, I desperately wanted just a little bit more to rub my new potatoes in. The courgettes were chargrilled just right and I sat back in total satisfaction, having eaten one of the best meals in recent memory. My fellow diners were also raving about their mains. To my left, a Montrealer was polishing off a charcoal grilled lamb with fried marrow, farika, almonds and seasoned yoghurt (£18.50). To my right, another handsome Canadian (ahem, my fiance) was picking carefully through a plate of chargrilled sardines with chopped salad and corn migas (£17.50), pictured at top of page. It looked a little finicky, but he assured me it was worth every bite. Not one of us had a single bad word to say. The service was brilliant too - attentive, knowledgeable and very friendly. Not wanting the night to end, we nodded dreamily at offers of dessert. 
The chocolate and apricot tart (£5.50) sent me into a small pleasure coma. Eyes closed, I took a moment to appreciate the richness of quality dark chocolate with just the teeniest hint of apricot. The side of fresh cream was a surprise bonus. If I had another stomach, I would have also ordered the yoghurt cake with pistachios and pomegranate (£5.50) as the combination of flavours was divine and felt like a real celebration of summer. And then came the bottle of sherry...and the rest gets a little fuzzy. But, from start to finish, Moro was a total treat. Run by married chef couple Sam and Sam Clark, the whole experience is deliciousness squared.