Everybody loves a good fondue. It’s not the most refined or complicated food out there but we all know there is something really satisfying about hot bubbling cheese in a pot. Since visiting Androuet in Spitalfields market back in March (full review here), I haven’t really had a chance to enjoy a good fondue. 10 months is a mighty long time to go without one so with that in mind, I booked myself a table at St. Moritz a few weeks ago.
St.Moritz is London’s oldest Swiss restaurant serving up genuine traditional Swiss cuisine to the people of London since 1974. This Wardour Street favourite is owned and operated by chef Armin Loetscher who makes sure you experience a slice of Switzerland right from the moment you walk through the wooden doors of this cottage like restaurant in Soho. You would be forgiven for thinking you are in a tiny little Swiss cottage in Gruyères because this place genuinely does look the part! The wooden chairs, crammed tables, accordion music in the background with bits of yodelling throw in for good measure all add up to make this experience very very Swiss. It’s not hard to see why St. Moritz is a Swiss expat favourite in London.
Ofcourse the ambience and the yodelling adds to the experience but it’s the traditional Swiss cuisine that makes this place a great little gem. The dish that stood out to me the most was the Escargots A La Mode Du Patron. The snails were beautifully cooked and that garlic and herb butter was absolutely gorgeous. I have no shame in admitting that I used a teaspoon to clean out that wonderful sauce. This starter was a definite winner for me.
I also tried the Assortiment De Charcuterie which as the name suggests is a selection of Swiss charcuterie served fresh with a light salad. Nothing too complicated here but the quality of the meat really does make all the difference and it shines through in this starter.
It would have been a crime to come to St.Moritz and not order one of their famous Swiss fondues. We ordered two different ones to take us through the night- the Fondue Neuchateloise and the Fondue Forestiere. The Neuchateloise is a big bubbling pot of gruyere and emmental cheese with hints of white wine whereas the Forestiere takes it to the next level with wild mushrooms thrown into the mix. Both served with a basket of crusty bread, it’s heaven
on a plate in a cauldron if you love your cheese. I personally prefer the slightly more complex flavours of the Fondue Forestiere – finding those bite sized wild mushrooms in the cheese is a real treat.
It’s not just the traditional Swiss food that’s great, St. Moritz also has quite an extensive selection of wines on offer. We tried a bottle of the Chasselas Suisse which was bloody brilliant and complimented the pots of cheese wonderfully. The friendly waiters and waitress are also more than happy to help you find a bottle that works with the food you order.
I had to fight the urge to order the Fondue Au Chocolate, another fondue of fine Swiss chocolates served up with selection of fruits. The two pots of cheese and our wonderful starters made sure we had no place for another fondue but having tried it previously I must say; if you can stomach it; by all means order the chocolate fondue – it’s the perfect end to a gluttonous treat.
St. Moritz is a great little place to meet up friends and spend an evening over a bubbling pot of their wonderful fondue without burning a hole in your pocket. Don’t worry if you aren’t a fan of a fondue (really?), they have a variety of other Swiss delicacies to choose from – they do serve up some great venison dishes which is always on the top of my list when I don’t fancy a cheese overload. Loetscher is on to a clear winner with St.Moritz and has been since 1974 – finding a table here without a reservation can be difficult and I can see why. Even the 90’s retro website with cheesy Swiss music and gif animations of fondue is annoyingly charming. It’s just a great little restaurant serving up some great Swiss dishes. Enough said.