London restaurants: Folie
Jamie Goode experiences a slice of Mayfair in Soho, at fancy new arrival Folie.
I lunched at Guillaume Depoix’s relatively new (November 2019) opening Folie a couple of weeks ago. It’s a great location, on Golden Square in Soho, next to Bob Bob Ricard. But this is more Mayfair than Soho: it’s sumptuously designed, all shiny, new and luxurious.
The design slightly retro – there’s a nod to the late 1960s – and the overall feel of the place is St Tropez blended with a little twist of London. It’s a really nice dining room, especially for lunch.
Wine is in the hands of Harry Ballmann, and he has compiled a really precise list, strong on France, but with a shorter selection of well-chosen picks from elsewhere. It’s conventional in the main, with lots of classics, but also a few nice left-field and natural picks. A proper wine list. The fact that the Champagne lists includes Egly-Ouriet and Ulysses-Colin alongside the top grand marques shows that this isn’t just a rich-person-bait list.
The food was spot on. I know some of the reviewers have given it a bit of a pasting, but I liked the presentation as well as the flavour. There’s a delicate touch here. Perhaps a question of reviewers’ expectations being off-kilter? The inspiration is the French and Italian Mediterranean coastline, given a modern London touch.
While this place feels very high-end, the food menu is very fairly priced. As long as you don’t go crazy on the wine list, this is not a particularly expensive place to eat. Not cheap, but good value.