Long-standing Michelin starred flag ship restaurant by Fergus Henderson - an ode to meat and an unpretentious format
This was a long over due visit as I have not been back since 2011 – five years later it is very good to see it again. The food was very much the same, winning formula of clean and flavoursome ingredients which are not complicated. The cooking here is confident and respectful to the key parts to each dish – the sardines, as fresh as they come, had beautifully crisp and light skin with succulent meat with natural oils, lemon and subtle herbs to maximise the sardine flavour and not let that be overtaken.
I can’t quite believe the pictures of the crispy pig skin or bone marrow did not come out, however, the latter was better than I remember and when is it not nice to have pork scratching done to near perfection? The welsh rarebit was also better than I remembered and the butterscotch sauce with the bread and butter pudding was basically faultless. A superb meal again with a lovely pint of Trinity ale which is the other wonderful bonus of this bar, come bakery, come restaurant venue that, it uniquely even looks like a blend of all three and in its informality you can have a pint. A lovely lunch making me resolved to getting round to doing the other St John establishments whenever I can.
Food Grade: 83%
I finally managed to see why this was so different and the immediate thought as one walks in is “Am I in the right place?” as it does not immediately look like a restaurant, more like a mix between a bakery, a butcher and a café in one. However that all adds to the total feeling of ease and as a result, atmosphere is guaranteed here with its relaxed feel. Quality dishes are given in a simplistic yet poweful manner.
In terms of the food, the bone marrow dish I had along with welsh rarebit was a simple delight and the addition of a bottle of Worcestershire sauce at the table to allow for individual taste added to the unpretentious nature of the establishment. It is, essentially a carnivore’s heaven and a good celebration would be for a pork-friendly group to have the whole suckling pig with all the trimmings as this would be wonderful dinner I am certain, based on the quality of the dishes I had and the style of the menu. All in all, a special place owing to its individuality and I definitely need to come back again to stretch the menu more.
Food Grade: 78%
Location (Click google logo for directions)