Sunday, 30 June 2013

The Harwood Arms

How a great pub should be

My second visit to the only pub in London with a Michelin star, having really enjoyed my last visit back in a hot summer day in 2012, I returned 1 year later with a few friends after a long day in the office. Located on the quiet neighbourhood of Fulham, The Harwood Arms is a gastropub famous for its game and venison. Co-owned by my favourite chef, the legendary Mr Brett Graham of Ledbury (This guy is cooler than The Rolling Stones!) and Mike Robinson.

So on to the food, the choice is a la carte style of starters, mains and desserts. As a pub, they got some very interesting beer and it's well worth trying a pint or two as they are brands that you won't come across all too often. We were given some bread before our starters, the soda bread was of very high quality, soft and full of flavours, it won't look out of place in a fine dining restaurant.

My starter of game board was a selection of wild Berkshire game, I finally got the chance to try out the famous venison scotch egg and I've got to say it lived up to its hype. The meat was medium rare with the egg still runny in the middle, the coating wasn't overly dry and the earthy venison worked wonderfully with the egg yolk.
game board for 2
venison scotch egg

For main, I had the braised neck of Herdwick lamb with rosemary curd. I love the use of lamb neck, it is such an under used cut but it has such a nice balance of richness. The usual garlic and rosemary were used but this was done at the highest quality, everything was bang on at the perfect level, it was a solid dish showing the power of classical flavours. Meat was rich and earthy, little bit of spices and sweetness came through from the garlic and the courgette, pure class.
Braised neck of Herdwick lamb

For dessert it was apricot and almond cake with lemon thyme. The nutty flavours along with the lemon thyme created a lovely aroma on the noses, but the apricot I found a bit sour for my liking as it doesn't seem like it was resting long enough. The only downside on the night.
Apricot and almond cake with lemon thyme

Overall I really enjoyed my second visit to The Harwood Arms, it was a touch better than my first visit. Main course was heavenly and service was excellent. We had a guest who was almost late for an hour but the staff dealt with it calmly and managed to serve the food at great timing. Unlike some places we weren't rushed at all and I really appreciated that. Decor is pub standard but forget about it, you are here for the quality food and great choices of beer. It is well worth a trip to this special pub.

Food 4/5

Head chef: 
Alex Harper

What I paid: 
£50 per head with 2 pint of beer

Average cost without drinks and services:

27 Walham Grove 

Fulham, SW6 1QP

Harwood Arms on Urbanspoon

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