London Larder was devised in 2012 to bring you the ultimate eating and drinking guide to London. It was borne out of a need for up-to-date, quantitative and whole-heartedly recommended places to eat and drink.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Paradise by Way of Kensal Green

Kensal Green

If, like us, you are fond of a Saturday night out on the town (or in some cases, a bottle of wine on the sofa in front of the TV), then you will be familiar with that groggy Sunday morning feeling. The remedy? Gastropub Paradise by Way of Kensal Green. Not only is Paradise a feel-good venue with great food, but it has come up with the ultimate Sunday hangover cure, shrewdly entitled the Sunday Session. Billed as “a lazy day of Yorkshire puddings, Bloody Marys and the Sunday supplements", it’s the perfect end to your weekend.

The Sunday Session first stretched its legs in March of this year and now takes place every Sunday. It pays homage to the mighty Bloody Mary, a much loved cocktail, which not only makes an appearance as the customary cocktail, but features as an element in many of the dishes served on the Sunday lunch menu. You can choose from Bloody Mary meatballs, fillet of halibut with buttered spinach and Bloody Mary sauce and Bloody Mary sorbet. Being a Sunday however, we opted for the traditional Sunday roast options, but not before we road tested a couple Bloody Mary cocktails to get us in the mood (and lift our drowsy heads).

If you fancy really going to town however, you can order a Bloody Mary with all the ingredients on a tray which you mix yourself: tomato juice, Worcestershire sauce, horseradish, crushed black pepper, lemon juice, Tabasco sauce, sherry, sea salt, celery sticks and of course, that all compulsory vodka. This is particularly great if there is a group of you trying to fend off the effects of the night before, and provides much amusement deciding who the best cocktail mixer is among you.

If you turn your attention to the interior design of Paradise, you recognise instantly that this is a venue out to draw attention. The interior is very reminiscent of a large country estate with old oil portraits, over-sized ornaments and mis-matched vintage furniture, mixed with a colonial-esque array of whitewashed bird cages mixed with modern pastel shades.

'Billed as “a lazy day of Yorkshire puddings, Bloody Marys and the Sunday supplements", it’s the perfect end to your weekend.'

We started our lunch with two light starters; a traditional prawn cocktail with finely chopped iceberg lettuce, prawns, cucumber, tomato and Marie Rose sauce; and for the slightly more adventurous, a roast chicken and spring green salad, which was filled with a wide assortment of ingredients including asparagus, Romanesco broccoli and a hazelnut dressing; crisp and refreshing and a great introduction to our Sunday roast.

For our main courses, we chose a thick cut of beautifully marbled rib of beef and several succulent cuts of lamb, both of which came cooked medium-rare, as all good red meat should, and which were served in a delicious Bloody Mary gravy which was full of meaty flavour. The overall execution and flavour of the meat was simply delicious. This came served with a variety of seasonal vegetables, which lacked a bit of flavour, but it was the potatoes that really stole the show, crisply cooked in goose fat with a soft silky puffed middle.

All together, the d├ęcor, service and food, was rapidly making Paradise a hot contender for our top ten roast dinners in London, but the option of having a Yorkshire pudding with every roast, and then the choice of having additional Yorkshire puddings on top, quickly put Paradise to the top of the pile!

Dessert was a choice of a number pristinely presented desserts, including sticky toffee pudding (our favourite), a cheese board, and fruit crumble with custard. We decided to have something a little different and chose the white chocolate mille-feuille with blood orange and and pistachio ice-cream. This might sound like an odd combination, but the flavours really blended well together and it was a suprisingly light dessert, leaving us feeling like we could still walk at the end of our big meal. We were a bit confused by the three white chocolate layers however, as a mille-feuille is traditionally a flaky or puff pastry. No matter, it was a great end to an excellent meal. 

Paradise’s The Sunday Session takes place every Sunday between midday and 8pm. If you’re lucky, the session will come alive with the sound of vinyl with the resident DJ playing old 45s, rare bootlegs and badass funk tracks. We strongly recommend you make a visit.

19 Kilburn Lane, W10 4AE

Average price for main meal: £16
Average price for a glass of wine: £5
Food/Drink: 5/5
Service: 5/5
Value: 4/5

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