7 Feb 2010
Having been to several of the one star restaurants in our region I was looking forward to trying JSW. At first glance I was a little disapointed to see that there was once an 8 course tasting menu which has now been slashed to a 5. On asking why,I was told it was too complicated with eight, as they were bringing out two dishes at a time and one was getting cold. - Anyway, the building is very pretty and looks the part. The food was very nice although my main critism for a Michelin restaurant was that there was absolutely no amuse bouche or any palette cleaners between courses and I can't say I have ever been to a Michelin restaurant where these extras didn't happen. I have even been to non-starred restaurants which have, and it all adds to the anticipation and enjoyment of the meal. So JSW, you should really think of adding these in as I mentioned to a member of your team - people who enjoy fine dining expect it. One of our courses also arrived whilst I was powdering my nose, so to speak, and really I feel both of our dishes should have automatically been held back until my return. Very young staff lacking a little in expreience also, but very pleasant natured. Tried to pay via American Express and was told it was not taken, which left us wondering if making money was the main priority of the restaurant (as there is a charge for the restaurant to take this card), and a few things that occured during the night left us wondering if the things lacking were due to trying to achieve higher profit margins rather than great dining.
In summary - a nice restaurant, but average. Would not go again, but hopefull thet they will make some needed changes.
Top tip: try Restaurant 27 in Southsea, just as good (if not better) yet half the price.