Wednesday, 5 December 2012

The Shed

We love fine dining and visiting the newest restaurant openings that's being raved by food critics. But there are times when we go back to the basics and want simple food that is humble, down to earth and comforting. A restaurant doesn't have to have a michelin star to be worth visiting. Good food should be accessible to everyone and we want to celebrate restaurants that work hard in delivering consistently tasty, seasonal food at affordable prices. 

The Shed opened recently, in the location where The Ark used to be, off Notting Hill Gate. Vanessa told me about it, saying its gamey dishes received some stellar reviews. The day we visited, the weather in London was especially treacherous, a combination of rain, sleet and frost; but we weren’t about to let the weather come between us and a meal planned with friends. We stepped from the cold into a long narrow dining room. The room was warm and cosy, the wooden d├ęcor lending the place a country farmhouse feel. Our server was friendly and helped us pick a spread of cold cuts, salads and mains. Hungry, we attacked the bread basket. The brown seeded bread came in large chunks with a wonderful crust, still warm from the oven, the pots of yellow creamy butter enticing us to have more bread.

Food was simple and of a good standard that surpassed our expectation from a neighbourhood restaurant. We were told that the restaurant is owned and run by 3 brothers. One is the chef, the other manages, the third manages supplies! We love a family run business, it makes it so much more personal. Because they source their meat and vegetables themselves, you can tell the freshness of the produce used. Despite being a neighborhood restaurant, there is pride in the execution of the dishes, flavour pairing and attention to presentation is evident. Portions were on the smaller side, so order at least one starter and one main per person, and order to share! The menu changes regularly to reflect what’s in season so you may or may not find what we had on the menu when you visit. The highlights of our visit were:

The Shed Pie-- This was by far the best dish. The filling was lamb mince with vegetables, topped with fluffy mash. I would have the whole one to myself next time!
Cuttlefish with Almonds, White Bean, Paprika and Sweet Chilli Sauce. One of the best dishes of the meal, the cuttlefish was crispy but not oily. The accompanying sauce was creamy and understated in flavour.
The Shed Doughnut-- Not a big Doughnut fan, I found this irresistible. It was light and fluffy, without having that oily taste of being deep fried. It wasn't too sweet either, most of its flavour came from the cinnamon coating. The cream was fresh, balanced perfectly by the tanginess of the cherries. 
Shed on Urbanspoon

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