Cuisson Pop Down – Interactive Dining!


You may well be familiar already with pop ups, those temporary restaurants that are springing up worldwide, but have you heard of a pop down? Cuisson Pop Down is an interactive dining experience created by luxury gastronomy experts, open Thursday to Saturday in London throughout the Summer. Delivering high end dining in an informal environment, guests are welcome to come and help plate up with the chefs if they wish.

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Held in a comfy basement in St James, you’re seated on communal tables and soon the conversation was flowing as we got to know our fellow diners. It’s probably best suited to fairly outgoing characters for this reason. The evening kicked off with a welcome Cuisson Vodka Cocktail with lemon verbena. This came with warm sourdough bread, served with cultured butter – a first for me but it has probiotics for added taste and health benefits. It was a refreshing start, as the chefs introduced themselves and encouraged us to ask any questions. They have trained in some of the UK’s top restaurants – The Fat Duck, Galvin at Windows, Le Gavroche, The Square and Maze.

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The open kitchen gave us a front row seat to observe the preparation of our first dish, a delicate combination of yoghurt, cucumber, dill and anise with toasted seeds and a fruity garlic oil to add aroma. They have a good selection of wines by the bottle and the glass, we chose a Sauvignon Blanc to go with our meal.

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Mr Luxe is a bit of a dab hand in the kitchen himself so was keen to help with the preparation!

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Some of our fellow diners got to work preparing the next course – let me stress though that you are welcome to relax, sit back and enjoy the food.

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My favourite dish may have been the ratte potatoes marinated in a burnt hay vinaigrette. If you were eating this blindfolded, you’d almost think the potatoes were meat, they had such a satisfying consistency. Our chefs declared this the umami course – umami is thought to be a fifth flavour that is savoury and meaty, in contrast with the four regular flavours: sour, sweet, salty and bitter. Mushrooms and parmesan cheese are also thought to have the umami flavour.

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Our next course, duck liver, pineapple, pink peppercorns and walnut was another winning combination. Walnut gave a satisfying crunch whilst the pineapple made an interesting contrast to the duck – this is definitely worth trying as a canapé if you have guests coming for dinner.

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Whilst we enjoyed the octopus pil pil with mustard and wild rice, it’s rather washed out on a white plate. The crisp texture of the wild rice made an excellent contrast to the soft fleshy octopus.

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Our final main course was a subtle yet powerful sous-vide salmon with horseradish cream and watercress.The sous-vide technique stops the fish from drying out and leaves it superbly tender.

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Dessert was an appetizing Lychee and Mango bavarois with strawberries and black olive sauce. Who would have thought to use olives in a dessert sauce? It certainly gave a lovely tang to the sweet bavarois. Considering that this is not their regular kitchen and it’s a particularly small one, we were very impressed with what our chefs managed to rustle up. They have a genuine love for cooking and for interacting with diners and they also do catering for corporate and private events.

Cuisson Pop Down dessert
Do you think the umami flavour exists? Have you ever experienced it?

Cuisson Pop Down, 15 Charles II Street, SW1Y
Tickets are priced at £39 for four courses or more and available to purchase via www.grubclub.com

  • Angie SilverSpoon

    Oooh looks quite different to your average pop up, I like the interactive element. I wish Mr Silver was more handy in the kitchen 😉
    Lots of love,
    Angie

    SilverSpoon London

    • I’m very lucky, but I read that you’re a dab hand in the kitchen rustling up sausage rolls so Mr Silver is lucky too!

  • Oooh you get help out with preparing some of the dishes too?!?! Sounds like something I’d like to get stuck into!

    • I hope you get to experience it Connie, I think it’s right up your street

  • Everything looks so delicious!

    Natalia
    http://www.lindifique.com

  • Jersey Girl

    I cannot believe how reasonably priced this is, for such an amazing experience! I am totally intrigued by the concept of Umami, we certainly need to try this out in Jersey somewhere, I’ll have to have a word with some chefs! It all looks beautiful, glad you both had a lovely evening! x Jersey Girl x http://www.jerseygirl.co

    • The funny thing is, they were saying umami is definitely a flavour whereas if you look online it’s a possible 5th flavour. I do think it exists and I love it!

  • Paola

    I’m glad that you had a lovely experience, everything looks delicious!!!
    Happy friday doll!!!
    Kisses, Paola.

    Expressyourself

    My Facebook

    • Same to you Paola, have a fab weekend – feeling hungry now looking at the pics again

  • This looks like such a lovely experience, the dessert sounds like the most delicious thing ever!

    • That dessert was really incredible, and fun to get involved in the plating up too

  • What a cool restaurant

    xo

    http://www.laurajaneatelier.com

    • It was fantastic, Laura! Nice to do something different – have a great weekend

  • Ohhh what a great experience, I would never eat duck liver, but everything else looks great!

    Xxx
    Naomi in Wonderland

    • They had another option for vegetarians and pescatarians which looked pretty tasty too

  • Mlle Coconath

    Looks delicious!!

    xx

    Mademoiselle Coconath

    http://mllecoconath.com

  • That is such a great way to have fun and learn something new too, love it!

    • Actually that’s a very good point, you do learn quite a lot about ingredients and presenting food

  • I have just eaten lunch but after seeing these pics, I feel hungry again!

    http://www.LUXESSED.com

    • We weren’t expecting so many courses, they were very generous with little extras!

  • the italian glam

    this is such a great tasty experience, my dear, great shots….

    and thanks for sharing, I have never heard of this new cuisine pop-down dining before

    so cool

    THE ITALIAN GLAM

    FACEBOOK

    INSTAGRAM

    • It’s quite a unique concept isn’t it, think it could work well in Italy!

  • Andrea Petersen

    AMAZING concept. Absolutely love it and think that is very good value for the level of talent! I may just have to pop down myself 😉 Lots of love, Andrea xxx

    Andrea’s Passions

    • I hope that you get to experience it Andrea, they’re so friendly and very talented

  • Well, I’m sure you already know that I wish I was there–being a foodie myself. I think that combinations sound and look very appealing. Kudos to Mr Luxe as well. My mum was a caterer so I used to always love seeing everything prepared like this. Have a great weekend Suze. x/Madison
    Weekend Links

    • Yes I know you’re a big foodie Madison, you would have loved this and I bet your mum would have too

  • I’ve never really tried any pop-up cuisine before, though I do rather like the concept. The slate serving plates are wonderful and how unusual you’re allowed to help serve up if wanted!

    Gabrielle | A Glass Of Ice x

    • The slate plates would be brilliant for serving food at home too

  • Love the concept of this, and I am amazed I’ve not done any pop-up restaurants before. That dessert does look good, even with the olives!

    Annabel ♥
    Mascara & Maltesers

    • Actually the olive sauce tasted really good, they must have sweetened it a bit!

  • This looks amazing and is such a cool concept. I would love to try it

    http://www.mimosasandme.com

    • It’s a very cool concept isn’t it! Have a great weekend Justin

  • Beauty Follower

    Love the fact you can see the chef during the food preparation and even better you can participate in that… must be a lot of fun 😉

  • Agness

    I never tried such a different combination of flavours, herbs and spices. Everything looks so yummy! 🙂

    • They really came up with some winning combinations and in such a small kitchen, amazing

  • Lucy

    Watching chefs at work is half the fun, so I like the idea of seeing them preparing the food. The ratte potatoes sound lovely Lucy x

    • Those potatoes were great, I would normally try to avoid them in the evening but these were worth the exception!

  • ♫ Alison M ♪

    What a lovely place. It is nice to see the chefs at work. Never heard of umami but the combinations of flavours look fab

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