By Linda Scarborough
La Colombe surpassed all the other contenders to win the Nespresso Service Excellence Award at the Eat Out Mercedes-Benz Restaurant Awards.
Perhaps it’s to do with the location, a short distance from the bustling city, or the slow and steady drive up to the restaurant, perched on the side of a mountain, or maybe even the way soft, silvery light illuminates the space, but arrival at La Colombe is always punctuated by a sigh, as you breathe out and open yourself up to the experience.
The service here, ably led by front-of-house manager Jennifer Hugé, is all about sustaining that feeling – eagerness as each course arrives, the thrill of the first bite, but always with an underlying feeling of having all the time in the world, of being at your most relaxed and receptive to pleasure.
It is this team effort that made La Colombe the sure winner of the Eat Out Nespresso Service Excellence Award for 2016. While numerous faces will come into focus during the course of your meal, discreetly clearing dishes and replacing cutlery, your dedicated waiter will be just that, looking after your glasses and keeping you entertained. Impeccably trained yet natural-seeming waiters are generous with their time, but also perceptive enough to sense their cue to leave you to it.
“You are always made to feel really welcome, and never forced,” says judge David Higgs. “La Colombe has always been associated with great service, headed up by Jennifer, but now they truly are hard to beat.”
Chief judge Abigail Donnelly agrees: “Highly professional slick waiters know their stuff. You are entertained with thorough explanations, down to every devoted detail. The service is impeccable with a kind of care that is infectious – nothing is lost in translation from the menu to the plate.”