An Unrough Wooing
“The camera enables us to keep a sort of visual chronicle. For me, it is my diary.”
Not since Mary Queen of Scots has there been such a splendid alliance of France and Scotland. For six years now, Frog and Scot has been enticing hungry clientele with its wall hung blackboard menus. It’s open for lunch and dinner Monday to Sunday. The French coast may be visible from Deal beach on a clear day but the bistro’s name is derived from its owners Benoit Dezecot and Sarah Ross’s origins. In the shrinking sunlit hours of a passing summer, pavement tables are in hot demand. French photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson, in The Mind’s Eye: Writings on Photography and Photographers, proved he was as adept with words as pictures.
The set lunch menu fills one blackboard. There’s a confident lightness to each course and more than a splash of oceanic goodness. Heirloom tomato with olive and basil has the faultless ripeness of a bumper harvest. Charred sardines, garlic butter, salad and frites celebrate pure simplicity of form and flavour. The genius of peach and Earl Grey sorbet is to distil and present the combined essence in a fresh light. A bottle of No Sexual Services Hunny Bunny propped on the bar looks intriguing; a less adventurous but rewarding choice is 2020 Petit Bourgeois Sauvignon Blanc.
That bastion of French taste, The Michelin Guide, describes Frog and Scot as, “A quirky bistro with yellow canopies and mismatched furnishings… Large blackboard menus list; refined, innately simple dishes which let the ingredients do the talking.” Lunch is absolutely flawless, drawing the coastal elite and a few interlopers. The day can continue a few doors down in Le Pinardier, a wine shop and bar, also owned by Monsieur Dezecot and Ms Ross.