We arrive on a damp grey day to find all the tasteful finishes one might expect in a newly refurbished gastro style pub. Upstairs feels uncluttered and minimal with tones of sage and peppermint green. There are grand fireplaces adorned with vintage sizeable mirrors which give a generous nod to its Georgian publican roots. The walls retain original panelling and oak round tables dominate the front room, which I’d recommend you book into for lunch or dinner if more formal dining is what you’re after. This space feels the most special of all the rooms. There’s also a loft bar, which caters for up to 35 people. This place seems to have it all!
Downstairs in the main bar table service is still an option (which is always good to know!) The green almost art deco interiors continue into the main bar creating what feels like a very successful refurbishment, managing a cosy environment with warming lighting, booths and soft furnishings while remaining bright, airy and calm. It’s open from 9am with a full breakfast menu through until late. This is a local you want to have on your doorstep
Food has a nod to tradition but feels more inventive and experimental than your classic pie and mash. On the breakfast menu you’ll find chilli corn bread, smoked ham hock as well as seeded apple and cinnamon porridge. On the lunch and dinner menu there’s the likes of White Park beef croquettes with truffle mayonnaise, baked Cooleeney cheese with smoked almond granola and fig chutney. We try the charred chicory and caramelised onion tart with poached pear and chestnut dressing which arrives in a pretty blue mottled plate. Plentiful but not overcrowded, it’s fresh and crisp with distinct smoky and sweet flavours vying for attention. We watch many a burger and fish and chip supper come from the pass, and absolutely have a moment of regret at holding back with the aim of not overindulging! Our chestnut gnocchi with celeriac puree, kale, roasted quince and sage butter arrives looking very enticing. vibrant purple kale is always eye catching, and celeriac puree is never a bad idea. The Castlemead chicken with salt baked celeriac and violet artichokes in an almond jus is the one that won me over the most. A rich mash of sorts, with good quality chicken plus some Cavolo nero in there. We also order the fries with truffle and Parmesan, which needless to say were totally delicious! A combination that wins every time!
On the brink of passing on dessert due to fullness the waiter talks us into trying the Bramley apple pie with caramelised chestnuts and vanilla ice cream. This I should note arrives in a portion for two so sharing was a great decision. It ticks all the boxes for a sweet, rich and indulgent dessert. I’m always a fan of ice cream with hot dishes too, especially with plentiful caramel.
Within the depths of Belgravia I’d say this might just be a hidden gem…get in there early or book to make sure you get a spot!