Places To Eat In Deal: Frog and Scot
Even though I’ve wanted to go since it first opened, I’ve just, finally, managed to enjoy a fantastically simple French lunch at Frog and Scot in Deal. Hidden down towards the end of the High Street (or the top, but my office used to be at the other end so I mentally adjust accordingly!) this unassuming French bistro had been serving up an a la carte and set lunch menus for years now, and a lunch between hair appointments, trips to the picture framers and a spot of #shopsmall Christmas shopping really proved to highlight why it has managed to be such an enduring success (and why it is the much better dining option than heading to The Rose opposite!)
Can I just say how lovely and helpful the service was? Once we’d all decided we wanted a large glass of the Côtes du Rhône, realised it would be cheaper to get a bottle, but worried we would not quite finish it (two of us had to drive at various points of the afternoon) our server told us no problem, she’d just leave us the cork so it could come with us after the meal if need be!
The wine was excellent, by the way. Bright, warming, and perfect with the food. I’d like to return to dig deeper into their wine selection, actually.
Whilst the starters all looked excellent, as it was only lunch, we opted for a few nibbly bits instead. From the actual starters list (it was on the board for both the a la carte and the set menu) we ordered the Pate de Campagne, a rough, bacon-wrapped country pate served with a good, rich, creamy but not overpoweringly garlicky aioli and cornichons. You should order this – the pate is excellent, meaty and well flavoured without being too overpowering – my only complaints being is it did not come with enough toast (this is a perpetual complaint of mine ordering pate out, I always have to order a size of extra bread to get the correct ratio!) and that there were not enough cornichons on the plate. Though, I’m addicted to the things, so this might well have just been a ‘me’ problem…!
We also had the saucisson, excellently flavoured and a generous portion, and the sourdough which came with a fantastic brown butter. Though, our only complaint of the meal here: I’m pretty sure whoever baked the bread that morning forgot to add any salt to the dough, it was crying out for some in a restaurant where otherwise everything else we had was perfectly seasoned!
The imaginative sort my family, once we spied there was a bavette lunch steak special on the board we all ordered it. Now, bavette can be a little tough and whilst it was not the most tender steak, otherwise it was perfectly cooked with a frankly stunning flavour, which is the reason one orders a bavette anyway. It was served with generous portions of both an unapologetically well dressed bitter salad and exceptional rosemary fries, and what has to be the very best bearnaise sauce I’ve had in a very long time. And I order a lot of bernaise sauce with my steaks!
They also have a rib eye on the menu, which, spying the quality of this you really should order if the bavette is not on, or if you’re visiting in the evening. Frog and Scot know their steaks!
We managed to branch out a little once we got to the dessert menu, ordering one of each of the desserts (rather than the cheese). My fathers only complaint about his Dulce de Leche Cheesecake was that there was not enough about it, but I can’t tell you any more because he was enjoying it so much I was not allowed a bite!
We otherwise shared the other two desserts. It had been our prediction that the Buche de Noel: made traditionally with what I think was a flourless sponge, a creamy set chestnut filling and a puddle of Creme Anglaise would be the star of the show, and whilst it was rather excellent, the very best thing we ended up eating at Frog and Scot was the bread and butter pudding served with a scoop of rich, creamy gingerbread ice cream which was enough to make me possibly rethink my philosophy of thinking that life is too short to make ice cream with egg yolks, and a generous scoop of apple compote. It was perfect: simple flavours, both crisp and gooey bits to the pudding, and utter harmony on the spoon. If it is still on when you visit, you’d be an idiot not to get this.