63 Abbey Rd, London
Visited 31st December 2007
New Year's Eve and we were flying home from London. I've always thought welcoming in the New Year on a plane would be fun, especially flying first or business class; we however were stuck in economy on a very average discount carrier. The £5 they charge for disgusting quality mini-bottles of wine meant lunch with my brother and his partner at The Salt House became our New Year's celebration. This rather nice pub in Abbey Road has a slick dinning room out the back where we enjoyed a slick meal.
The menu offers a selection of international dishes, the usual pub favourites and a houmourous thesis on the origin of their produce. To start we shared 'duck pancakes' and 'squid with chorizo'. The spicy Spanish style squid was lovely and tender, while the Peking duck was awesome; served as a whole crispy duck leg it was superior to any attempt I've had in Hong Kong. For a main I went with a more traditional British option; roast pheasant. The whole bird came served with parsnip chips, red cabbage and an intense, dark sauce; it was delicious and perfect for a winter's day. Naomi enjoyed her rack of lamb, my brother gleefully grappled with a huge serve of fish and chips and we washed it down with a pleasant bottle of Brouilly. Oh yes and dessert; a couple of monstrous plates of apple crumble and sticky toffee pudding pushed the boundaries of satisfied into the land of stuffed.
It was New Years and despite the lack of party poppers and legless drunks, lunch at The Salt House was superb. The food was of the upmost quality and the whole experience one of polished efficiency. Bills in Pounds Stirling tend to be scary and while £100 isn't cheap, for such top-notch grub in London it's not totally unreasonable. Slamming English food is easy enough to do, but places like The Salt House make a positive impression, especially when they're able to do both traditional English dishes and a range of international ones with such precision.
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