Little Social: From Paris (or Pollen St), with love

Lost in time. Or Pollen St.
Lost in time. Or Pollen St.

The title of my last post on a Jason Atherton establishment was ‘Atheron Strikes Again’. So what did I do when it came to giving this one a title?

‘Atherton Strikes Again II’

‘Atherton Strikes Again. And Again’

‘Atherton’s Iron Is So Hot Right Now’

You get the jist of it. Challenging, simply because of the calibre of the place.

Anyway, in other news, it’s a showery Saturday (god bless the British Summer) and we’re lunching at Little Social with dear friends Sherwin and Charles. Located on what must be one of Jason’s favourite streets in London, this place marries old school French bistro vibes with that ‘je ne sais quoi’ Atherton style of today.

Well, I just happened to be in the area. Okay!?
On arrival, you can’t help but be swept off your feet, it’s all dark wood paneling and leather banquettes; one of those places where it’s completely acceptable to while away an afternoon. There’s a charming little table in the window where you can watch passersby, making like you’re in the 16th arrondissement. We’re ushered towards a little alcove at the back of the room; big enough for say 10 people.
Settling into our private room.
Strongly considering writing the afternoon off at this stage.
The private setting makes up for the underwhelming Negroni. It can’t have been the gin, Citadelle is one of my favourites; maybe it’s just forgettable because I have one of the best Negronis ever later at Cartizze in Mayfair. Most things taste better when they’re barrel-aged, I guess. Since sitting down to write this, I’ve made myself a Negroni so all faith is restored in my aperitif du choix.
A forgettable negroni made with one of my favourite gins.
Three kinds of gluten-free bread in a wooden box is a first, fair play lads. If I hadn’t already enjoyed a knockout steak tartare at Berners Tavern the day beforehand, I would’ve been all over Little Social’s version as it is rather special. One reason I love asparagus season so much is because of dishes like this: English asparagus with slow-cooked egg, truffle vinaigrette, lardo and hollandaise dots.
[![Traffic Light Gluten Free Bread](](
Traffic Light Gluten Free Bread
[![Token Quail Egg](](
A tip top tartare made even better by the token quail egg.
Hollandiase, asparagus and eggs are a beautiful combination. Throw some truffle in the mix; knockout stuff.
Our table is divided between the sirloin and the bass ‘BLT’. The latter is a stack of roasted bass, Portobello mushie, smoked bacon and charred baby gem, and tastes as fun as it sounds. Although, I’d like to try it with the bass on top of everything else as it might keep the skin nice and crispy. As you can imagine, the schteaks go down well. I even distract Sherwin to swipe some Bernaise.
[![A BLT. Just not as you know it.](](
A BLT. Just not as you know it.
For me, even so much as contemplating any more food is out of the question, but the boys have other ideas, and cannot say no to the tarte tatin. I’m savoury over sweet any day of the week, but ‘those’ caramelised apples are another level of comfort food. When I’m not looking, Darty even manages to squeeze in a hot chocolate moelleux with sea salt and almond ice cream.
On the verge of tucking into tarte tatin, family-style
Funny that the only (UK-based) restaurant in Atherton’s group I have yet to dine in is the original, the mother ship where it all began; Pollen Street Social. Something tells me I’d better hotfoot it there pronto.
[![The Very Kerri seal of approval.](](
Busting out a little Very Kerri seal of approval dance.
Five Very Kerri things about Little Social
  1. Jason Atherton
  2. Sensational starters showcasing the best seasonal produce
  3. The people-watching window table up front and the semi-private space down the back
  4. The genuine feeling of being in France
  5. Lost in time appeal