Monday

Petersham Nurseries - just...stunning!

The rather wonderful Petersham Nurseries has been on my hit list for as long as I remember however never quite finding the time to book or, for that matter, get in! I had put it in the back of my mind to try next summer.
Luckily for me my Maid of Honour blocked out a Sunday and managed to bag two spots in the main restaurant. After a browse through the stunning shop and totalling up that I probably spent around £10k in around 5 seconds on gorgeous pieces of furniture (in my head) it was time for lunch.
Both cafe and restaurant are housed in beautiful Victorian glasshouses and are completely full to the ceiling of flora and fauna - it is a rather magical place to be, especially this time of year where twinkling Christmas lights are entwined throughout the climbing plants and branches. 
The simple menu has around 6 starters and the same for mains. All seasonal, all local sustainable ingredients and all incredibly tempting. The emphasis here is showing the ingredients off in the best possible way. Many dishes have only 3 or 4 elements to them. It's simple cooking at Michelin standards and completely my kind of food...colourful, fresh and the type of food which makes you content with each mouthful...

Starter of Burrata, Autumn pumpkins, hazelnuts, cavolo nero tips, oregano and chilli. Dressed simply in olive oil - delicious. 



With the cold Autumnal air outside there was one thing on the menu I knew would warm me right up 'Fish stew'. Abundant with clams, red mullet, mussels and garlic bruschetta. Served with a good dollop of a punchy Aioli it really hit the spot and was a wonderful bowl full of goodness.
I absolutely loved it here and left with a beaming smile and a warm feeling of content. A really special little place where you can leave your London head behind and completely immerse yourself into a totally different world. Go early doors, have a good old romantic wander down the river, take in the cold crisp air and work up a good appetite. A place never to be missed and one that is now firmly at the top of my favourites list - Miss G thank you. xx

W: http://petershamnurseries.com/eat/cafe/about
A: Petersham Rd, Richmond, Surrey TW10 7AB
T: 020 8940 5230

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Petersham Nurseries Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato 
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Wednesday

The Lodge - Jimmy's Pop up in Clapham

You may remember a while back my girlfriends and I had a rather strange dinner at The Secret Garden (another pop up behind the mastermind of Jimmy Garcia). It was a little bit 50/50 and therefore I was ever so slightly dubious in going although, knowing full well the food was excellent the last time I had to go at it with a fresh mind... 

Jimmy's Winter adventure which originated in Balham last year was such a hit he's re opened it in the same space and my god, it's a transformation. The room is wonderful - cosy, intimate and seats are covered in tartan fabric making it a full transportation to a snugly log cabin and all that's missing is a fire, cold toes and some snow...
Taken from the Lodge website (I believe this is the Balham venue)
Four of us went along last week on a balmy Thursday evening and the place was heaving...think similar apres ski atmosphere just without the red noses and frost bitten fingers to find people already hitting the bar area hard for a long evening ahead. 

On receiving our menus we ordered the viognier and a couple of warm 'butter rums' topped with meringue (a must order) and settled in for the next couple of hours.
Our starters arrived and were thoroughly enjoyed. All expertly cooked and devoured in seconds...

A light dish of Scallop Carpaccio - ​Hand Dived Scallops, Pancetta, Melon and Pickled Cucumber. Refreshing with a good sweet and sour hit to it. 
Vicars Game Wood Pigeon, Pear and Celeriac Remoulade and Chicory was my choice of starter and it was delicious, plentiful and much lighter than the picture suggests!
The Gameboard was had across the whole table. An ENORMOUS combination of the English Countrysides favourite meats and birds - 

Mini Venison Chateaubriand - was succulent and nicely charred (served pink) 
Wild Boar Scotch Egg. My favourite on the whole board. Seasoned well and of course the make or break of this snack...a nice runny golden yolk... 
Heather Stuffed Pigeon. Again, served perfectly pink with a crisp skin 
Mini Game Burger cooked rare was juicy and flavoursome; and finally 
Pigeon Bon Bon all served with crisp skinny fries and a dressed side Salad.


Personally to get into the spirit of the place do what we did. Gather some food loving friends (it isn't for the light stomached!!). Order the main sharing board and eat till you can eat no more! Two types of fondue are also available (I am told these will always be here even with the menu changing often) as well as a charcuterie board...that's if you can move your eyes away from the four equally tempting main options. Great atmosphere, fab food, even better booze...a Winter Winner and a must book (it packs out quickly).

Book: http://www.thelodgeclapham.com/

The Lodge Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato 
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