A soft launch of a restaurant set up by an ex-Palomar chef – how could I miss out?! Foley’s is brought together by Head Chef Mitz Vora who joined from his position as Sous Chef at The Palomar. Following a successful six-week pop-up (at Foley’s Tasting Kitchen) in Shepherds Bush, the team opened their permanent home on Foley Street in Fitzrovia, hence the name. Generously, the reservation team offered me the soft launch just after it had finished, given the enthusiasm I’d expressed for the restaurant when trying to book.
The space is vast and set over two floors. Fittingly for summer, there’s an alfresco coffee bar, but if you’re inside, there’s an open kitchen with bar seats downstairs. Indeed, the view of the action at The Palomar is one of the key ingredients to its success.
The menu is comprised of a diverse range of modern world dishes inspired by the spice trail. It’s branded as “experimenting with food from around the world with trade route twists and influences”: very reminiscent of one of the papers on my History degree! The menu is vegetarian friendly:
- Indonesian peanut crackers and tomato sambal (£3.50);
- Sweet potato fritters (£6) with grilled pineapple, curried red onions, saffron coconut curry;
- Aubergine (£8), dressed with pomegranate, dates, chilli lime yogurt, puffed quinoa and feta;
- Cauliflower (£8), with tzatziki, tomato and smoked peanuts;
- Market salad (£6.50), with sprouted greens, granny smith, cucumber smoked peanuts, radish, bok choy and buttermilk; and
- Super greens (£6.50), with gem lettuce, kale, avo, red onion, fennel, feta, spiced quinoa, pistachio, orange.
All options sounded like a wonderful match of textures, nuts, dried fruits and Middle Eastern spicing. Given that we were spoilt for choice, my companions and I shared all the vegetarian options on the menu.
The crackers were a crunchy delight and I definitely hope to see similar ones sold in the shops.
The fritters were also incredibly tasty, especially with the coconut-based spices which lent them their Indonesian twist.
The super salad is undoubtedly one I’m going to have to recreate at home; the avocado was deliciously creamy and reminded me of a healthy take on the Indian chaat.
Interestingly, I learn that Mitz is from Mumbai and you can definitely tell this from the Indian-themed spices of the dishes. This is definitely clear from the standout dish of the evening: the cauliflower steak – something that’s becoming a very trendy dish. The green sauce it was served with was deliciously moreish and with its mint and coriander seasoning, I hope to recreate a similar curry at home.
Although the portions are small, the food is “small but mighty” (my new moto in life). It’s an ideal tapas sharing venue. Very Yum(tini).
Foley’s, 23 Foley Street, London, W1W 6DU