Rabot 1745 are crazy for cocoa.
Once upon a time, it seems that an inspired genius posed the question “what if Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory was a restaurant?”. This person will find their answer in Borough Market, home of Rabot 1745. Set up by the founders of Hotel Chocolat, the restaurant uses cocoa in pretty much every dish on the menu, in order to bring a taste of the Caribbean to Borough Market.
It’s actually the second restaurant the Hotel Chocolat team have set up. Their first eatery, Boucan, sits on a cocoa plantation in Saint Lucia, in the heart of the Caribbean rainforest. Alright, so it’s quite nice, but does it really compare to London Bridge?
Anyway, to the food. Cocoa has been used as a savoury ingredient for three thousand years, and Rabot 1745 are taking chocolate back to its roots by using it to enhance the flavours of classic British dishes, whether as a spice, or a lashing of melted chocolate. These experiments have resulted in some unusual but brilliant food. The standout on Rabot 1745’s menu is the lamb rump, marinated in cacao nib, and glazed with chocolate. Make sure to add a side of white chocolate mash, which the menu promises “shouldn’t work, but it does”.
Alternatively, Rabot 1745 offers a burger. Not just any burger, though, because this one has a hidden pearl of chocolate ganache at the centre, primed and ready to melt all over your meal. Screw the diet, I want one of these.
Dessert, unsurprisingly, skews chocolatety. Amongst the delights you’ll find here are Caribbean sorbets, a trio of chocolate mousses, and a devilishly tempting molten lava cake. Rabot 1745 creates the dessert for the BAFTA awards each year, with this year’s winner being a chocolate mousse with salted caramel ganache, topped with sesame seeds and a dark chocolate flourish.
That’s just in the restaurant, by the way. Rabot 1745 also houses a cafe, which serves one of the best hot chocolates in London, as well as cakes and pastries. There’s also a terrace, which overlooks the hustle and bustle of Borough Market, and an afternoon tea with an expected cocoa edge.
It seems appropriate that the word cocoa is derived from ancient Greek, where it translates as “food of the gods”. A meal at Rabot 1745 is certain to make you feel godlike – or at the very least, give you a serious sugar rush.
Location: . Nearest station is London Bridge. See it on Google Maps.
Opening hours: The restaurant is open 12-10pm Tuesday to Friday, and from 9am to 10pm on Saturdays. It’s closed Sundays and Mondays. The bar is open 5:30pm until late, Tuesday to Saturdays, and is closed Sundays and Mondays.
Price: Starters from £6, mains range from £12 to £24, and desserts start from £6.50.
More information: from their website.
Featured image: @rabot1745