The first impression you get when entering Texture is one of this being a warm, bright and relatively relaxed restaurant. The cream-coloured walls, high ceilings, and friendly staff offer the perfect backdrop for Sverrisson’s cuisine. On top of that, you have a very good wine list here, with one of London’s best selections of wines by the glass: Roulot, Montcalmes, Pichler,…
The cuisine here, however, is what really makes Texture stand out. Before Nordic cookery became as fashionable as it was during the past two to three years, Sverrisson already used products from his native Iceland. Unlike some Danish, Swedish or Norwegian chefs, he has the advantage of not cooking in those environments, and not branding himself in that way, and therefore can use vegetables and fruits from other parts of the world too.
With dishes such as a ham hock salad, the kitchen shows what it is capable of. This is a dish that manages to make the rather humble ham hock stand out and shine. The pickles and vinaigrette add the acidity that prevents the dish from being too heavy or dull. This is simple, and yet sophisticated food. More importantly, it doesn’t skimp on flavour.
Equally good is a piece of cod. Beautifully cooked and of fine quality for London’s standards, it comes with barley, avocado, a couple of herbs and lemon. The combination with the fish is beautiful, and makes it one of the most impressive lunch menu dishes we’ve had in London in a long time. Both quality, and execution are there.
The pastry section here is no less competent. With a dessert combining coconut with chocolate, it shows just how well it balances different flavours. The freshness of both the coconut and some yogurt give a counterpoint to the rich, intense chocolate. By not using chocolate that is too bitter, the whole thing comes together beautifully and feels light enough for you to enjoy the rest of the day.
Sverrisson’s cooking is different. You will find no other restaurant in London cooking like this. Qualitatively, it is up there with the best restaurants of the city. On top of that, the lunch menu here must be one of the bargains left in London’s dining scene. Whilst it is often a place that is forgotten by the bloggers and critics, it is one that people who like real food will doubtlessly enjoy a lot.