Lunch at Sonny’s Kitchen, Barnes

Sonny’s Kitchen, Barnes:

One of those pretty backwaters in London, Barnes seems to have somehow have escaped the over-development that plagues much of West London.  Perhaps that’s because there’s no underground line that runs anywhere close.  So to reach Sonny’s Kitchen (which is less than a couple of miles from where I live), I had to get on the tube to Kew and cadge a lift with my dining companion. I was excited to be visiting because it’s not that long since I went to Kitchen W8, another restaurant that falls under the wing of  Rebecca Mascarenhas and Philip Howard and put it firmly on my personal favourites list.  And so I had great expectations.

Sonny's kitchen Bar

A friendly place with a number of distinct dining areas,  this is a local bistro that punches above it’s weight. There’s a splendid sounding set lunch – two courses for £16.50 and three for £18.50 and I am quite sure I’d be visiting a lot more frequently if I lived in the area (or even if I could work out the vagueries of the London bus network.  The bread was first class too, which is always a good sign.

sonnys kitchen bread

Of the starters, my salad of crab with butter lettuce, spring onions and avocado was the winning dish.  Very fresh crab with the lightest of citrus dressings nestling in soft lettuce leaves.Sonny's kitchen Crab Salad

I’d have liked to order the asparagus, but it came with a deep fried egg and losing half the dish seemed like missing the point.  So, my companion ordered it, curious to find out how the egg was presented.  The asparagus was beautifully cooked and the egg a gastronomical work of art, coated in golden breadcrumbs with a perfectly runny yolk, but his view was that the dish as a whole would have been improved by warm or at least room temperature asparagus.

Sonny's kitchen Asparagus with Deep Fried Egg

My main course of roasted fillet of cod wrapped with lardo di colonnata was an experiment.  I hadn’t tried lardo di colonnata before, though I’d heard it mentioned in hushed voices by some of my food loving friends.  It comes from an area of Tuscany famous for its marble and this cured pigs fat, traditionally made in large marble basins has enjoyed IGP (protected geographical indication) status since 2004.  Usually just eaten very finely sliced on a piece of bread, I was intrigued.  Now, perhaps that was a  foolish move on my part since I am not usually keen on ‘fatty’ products, but I do like cod wrapped in pancetta.  In this case I really found the flavour of the lardo quite overwhelming and, like a heretic, removed it to enjoy the perfectly cooked cod on a bed of peas, spring onions and lettuce.  You can just see it in the photo, a filmy wrapper of melted fat.

Sonny's Kitchen Cod in Lardo

The skate wing ordered by my companion looked perfect to me, with a nutty brown  beurre noisette with capers and our sides of  french fries and spinach were pretty faultless.

Sonnys Kitchen Skate Wing

For dessert I ordered the tarte fine of apples with vanilla ice cream while my companion asked for an English cheese platter.

Sonny's Kitchen Lemon Posset

Now, while I was in no doubt that I’d eaten enough, the chef brought us two very delicious lemon possets as a kind of pre-dessert.  And, the apple tart was so delicious I managed to eat both!

Sonny's Kitchen Apple Tart

I can’t quite rave about Sonny’s Kitchen as I did about Kitchen W8, partly because I simply didn’t enjoy the flavour combination of lardo and cod with delicate early summer vegetables. Having said that it’s very, very good.  And some of the simple dishes sound exceptional (linguine with chicken stock, tarragon, butter and parmesan for instance).  The prices are keen and the food is so much better than most local bistros of this type.  Now I need an excuse to go back and check more of the menu;)  – And if you eat with your eyes, well this place gets full marks – some of the most beautiful presentation in London.

Sonny's Kitchen Cheeses

Sonny’s Kitchen
94 Church Road

Sonny's Kitchen on Urbanspoon

4 / 5 stars     
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  1. says

    Lol, I can’t tell you how many amazing restaurants I byass because they are “out of the way”;-) Good thing you made it to this one though, from the dessert to the cheese plate, everything looks tasty!

  2. says

    I definitely need to try it.
    The dishes all look great and seasonal. The chef definitely cares about the quality of his products.
    And it is not far from where I live 😉
    Thank you for a sharing a great address.

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