Page 25 - Poole Audi Feast Magazine Edition 2
P. 25

Don’t mend it if it isn’t broken, but do move forward with expectations and market trends. And here we have Isabel’s, a genuine Poole legend and after many years, under new ownership.
Potentially a daunting thought, but thanks to the organic evolution of head chef Justin (who has worked at Isabel’s for many years), the cosy and intimate environment maintains its charm, and some. The downstairs dining area is now a classic bar – cocktails, Scotch, rum and Ti any lighting, great use of space allowing the upstairs to be dedicated to dining.
We favour a booth, and feel really at home, as the menu is familiar, yet respectfully re ned.
The à la carte is one of the most elaborate on the Feast tour – with give or take 15 starters and mains, each, to choose from!
The sou é au fromage, champignons sauvages, and soupe a l’oignon are long-term favourites – however, to see what Justin has to o er we invite the chevrotin au noix to the candlelit table. This has layers of warm goat’s cheese and beetroot with a honey and mixed nut crust – not only a picture and beautifully presented, but a stunning earthy match with a bottle of Clos du Chêne Cahors 2014, (a fraction under £28 for the bottle), a wonderful match for the goat’s cheese with an eye on the main course as well...
Our guests remark on the coquille St. Jaques, maison. Again beautifully presented, interestingly without the namesake shell, but plump, smooth and garnished with peppers and corn.
The who’s who of classic French main courses include; tournedos au Stilton et Porto, entrecote Café de Paris, and blanc de turbot à la moutarde.
We have set our minds on the roasted cannon of lamb with Moroccan spice and sweet potato with butternut squash and
rosemary jus, and with some greens on the side, it is literally perfect. It was ordered as ‘pink as chef dares’ and chef likes a challenge it seems – the lamb was remarkable, pink, relaxed, butter tender and bursting with  avour. As was the entrecôte aux cepes, a generous sirloin steak, again cooked to order perfectly, which on this occasion was medium and one of the best pieces of meat on the tour. Sides of chips, seasonal greens, and conversation with waiting sta , who are just lovely, leads into dessert.
The must have Isabel’s trio has something for everyone – our advice is to acquire more spoons, and the vanilla panna cotta with berries and a bitter-sweet marmalade – swished down with a glass of Pedro Ximénez and Monbazillac.
What a fabulous way to spend the evening, up close, intimate, satis ed and delighted that Isabel’s is prospering in the next stage of its gastronomic journey – bon voyage – we’re delighted to be part of it...
01202 747885
32 Station Road, Lower Parkstone Poole, Dorset, BH14 8UD

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