Posted on 2009/01/29 20:59:19 (January 2009).
[Tuesday 27th January]
Had a much more reasonable day at work today, and left not long after 6. I was keen to get away from the office, but also didn't really feel like going home. So instead I called Chie and arranged to meet up for dinner, then headed into the centre of London - on foot, and had a pleasant stroll along the edge of Belgravia up to Marble Arch, and from there along Piccadilly.
I decided to try out another new pub from my recently compiled list of London pubs I'd like to visit. This time I thought I'd give The Guinea a go. It was rather nice - apparently parts of it date back to the 17th century, and, like many of my favourite pubs of late, it was tucked away down a quiet little mews, in a rather grand residential area (in this case, Berkeley Square). Nice decor inside, I particularly liked the Vanity Fair caricatures (they had some by Leslie Ward who had drawn the caricature of my favourite gin distiller Sir Frederick Seager Hunt, of which I'm a proud owner of a print. So that was a nice start to the evening.
I then wandered from there to Covent Garden, where I met up with Chie. I fancied some Belgian beer and frites, so we decided to try out Lowlander, a Belgian/Dutch café. I wasn't hugely impressed - the frites weren't particularly marvellous - but I suppose it was a bit different at least.
The rather obscure title for this entry, incidentally, enters the evening at this juncture, and has no real relevance other than it was a little bizarre and caught my attention. When it came time to pay the bill in this place, I pulled out a £20 note which I'd got out from a cash machine just an hour or so earlier on. Quite inexplicably, someone had written "Mark Fisher" on one edge of it.
Having just had a bowl of frites we were still very much in the market for a proper dinner, and so decided to head out from there for a wander to see what we could find. After a short walk we happened upon Great Queen Street, which Time Out describes as (rather irritatingly) a "Gastropub", although to me was more of a bistro.
Anyway, catering nomenclature aside, it was very good. Quite an upmarket sort of atmosphere in there, the staff all seemed genuinely happy (a rarity in the UK), and the menu was really well thought out and well executed. I had a mushroom stew - the sort of vegetarian option which was for once actually conceived with the apparently bizarre notion that a man who isn't on a diet may be eating it. I started enjoying it before it even arrived. Not a hint of goat's cheese salad or butternut bloody squash risotto - this was hearty, decent proper food with big, bold flavours. It came with a herb dumpling which was fragrant and quite divine, whilst also being reassuringly stodgy to exactly the right extent. The accompaniments were very good too - some delicious roseval potatoes and even the bread was good.
As we were having rather a jolly evening of it, I proposed one last venue before we headed home - another pub on my list - Ye Old White Horse. I think I'd actually got this pub confused with another, thinking it to be one of the establishments which claimed to be the oldest pub in London. This place didn't really look that old, but still, it was nice enough in itself. Being right next door to some of the buildings of LSE it had a very student sort of vibe, which was quite nice.
Headed home after that, getting on the tube at Temple.
Post a comment