I'm a touch late to the game with this restaurant. By a touch late I mean pretty much bang on a year...
I have been meaning to go here for, well since I heard about it really on this lovely little blog
Nip over to her blog and have a read, Im always seeing what she's up to!
Considering how much I manage to slut it about on the restaurant scene I don't really have an excuse for not having been here. So I apologise.
So welcome to Barnyard, a venture from Ollie Dabbous (of the highly praised Dabbous, which also happens to be just down the road). When this opened it had a no reservations policy but Im glad to see this has changed when I booked 5 of us in for dinner last night. I was also really glad because the place is tiny! They have managed to make good use of the space with the majority of seating up at the back with larger tables to accommodate 6 of us and then smaller high tables for 2 down at the front as well as being able to sit along the bar.
Jess and I were the first to arrive and promptly set about doing the important things like ordering wine and nibbles. There were many an interesting cocktail, or hard shakes on the menu but I can't ever really handle such a massive drink when I want to eat all the food.
Which from a first glance at the menu, I did.
It was simply laid out under the different headings, pig, cow, chicken and egg, and then vegetables and sides.
As Maddie arrived so did our nibbles, closely followed by Cameron's sister Keisha, who it was a pleasure to finally meet. Finally Cameron arrived, stylishly late as always, (being on time is so over)
We tucked into the wine, big fat green olives
A delicious charcuterie board of cured mutton, fennel salami, prosciutto and crispy salty olive oil smeared bread.
Then the cornbread, oh the cornbread. We ordered one, took one bite and ordered another. Sweet, warm and doughy dreams of mouthfuls. I'd go back again just for this.
The waitress explained the menu, saying that it was a good idea to have about 2-3 plates per person and they came exactly as they said on the menu. We decided, after a quick look that we all pretty much wanted everything on the menu. So thats what we did, ordered almost everything.
The suckling pig with a celeriac and caraway seed slaw
2 portions of sausage rolls with a homemade piccalilli
The barbecued Bavette steak with a homemade dill pickle mustard and black treacle
Cooked to perfection I may add
Roast beef and watercress salad with sweet pickles, horseradish and shavings of Berkswell cheese. This was truly a master of a salad, with big thick slices of cold rare beef with smearings of horseradish
2 portions of the delicious crispy lemon and garlic chicken wings with smoked paprika which were a firm favourite round the table.
A pot of bubble and squeak with apple chutney, black pudding topped with a fried egg
which was a dreamy mess of goodness
and the black pudding was to die for. I may have kept that down my end of the table for a bit longer that was possibly fair
No meal is complete without sides. Cauliflower cheese...
2 portions of Corn on the cob, which the kitchen kindly cut into 5 pieces for us, as it usually comes as one whole cob in a portion. I mean that kind of service really never goes unnoticed.
Finally a chicory salad with lovage and mint and a charred broccoli to make sure we got in our greens.
Our table filled to groaning we ordered abetter bottle of wine and got stuck in.
For me personally, you can't beat this kind of meal. everyone chatting away over delicious plates of food. Passing things around and all being able to comment on the same things. I just would like to always eat this way.
I also think its so much better value for money. Look how many dishes you get to try!
I really couldn't fault the food. The broccoli had the best crunch, the bavette steak was just so rare and juicy. The only thing that didn't grab me on the table was the salad but I'm not a massive fan of raw things. My food partner of dreams Cameron also agreed with me. We would have rather had the cheese ladened jacket potato!
The only downside was we had to vacate our table by 8.30 and we had a particular raucous crowd of boys behind us that just got a bit grating to be honest...
The service was wonderful with a lovely waitress that took us through everything and made sure we were well looked after, and even apologised for having to kick us off the table. When we got the final bill I was so pleasantly surprised, for 2 bottles of wine and 16 dishes, it was £35 each including tip.
I mean really, how can you ever argue with that. We paid up and headed off for a few more drinks down the road at the London Cocktail Club. Mmmmmm all the cocktails. Perfect end to a lovely evening!
So glad I finally made it here. I will be back, at some point, so many restaurants, SO little time.