Table Talk: Where Tony Ash eats ...

Gordon Ramsay at Claridge's is just so damn special, says Tony Ash, MD of furniture design company Vitra UK

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Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

Being based in London, I feel blessed - so many restaurants to choose from and an expense account that means I can use them. But this is so much more upmarket than anywhere else. You wouldn't go there every day, but it's the perfect place to take an important client or to say thank you after sealing a big contract.

I first went there with my wife just after it opened. We planned to have just the set menu, as it was jolly expensive. Then we saw the menu gastronomie - the tasting menu - with eight or nine courses, and thought 'screw it'.

She spotted Gordon Ramsay milling around and got him to sign the menu.

It was a really memorable experience, and now I take clients because that first time was so special.

The food is sublime. Beef Wellington is not on the menu, but it's always available if you ask. It's a great main course. My favourite starter is the scallops - a great partner to the red meat main. They also have a super cheese selection. Their cheese buyer knows more than even my wife, who's the cheese queen. Similarly, they have an amazing wine list and a knowledgeable sommelier. He gets exactly the wine to go with what you've ordered without charging you £250.

And it has an amazing maitre d', Jean-Baptiste Requien. He's very old-school for a young guy, and remembers you and what you ate last time.

This gives you confidence - the clients go in thinking 'he knows what he's talking about', even when I haven't a clue. Jean-Baptiste has in the past invited us on a tour of the kitchen. Clients think that's great.

There's even a chef's table - if you book early you can sit in the kitchen and eat.

GORDON RAMSAY AT CLARIDGE'S
Brook Street, Mayfair, London W1K 4HR, 020 7499 0099
Three courses a la carte £65 per person

FAVOURITE DISHES
Scallops
Beef Wellington
Selection of French and British cheeses

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