Summer Menu at Brockwell Park Lido
There are few nicer places to be on a warm summer’s evening than sitting alongside an outdoor pool. Sipping on an Aperol Spritz, the perfect start to the evening, we watched enthusiastic swimmers pacing the length of the pool. It’s actually not far from where I live and I’m tempted to try myself. My only challenge would be that the Lido Cafe would be there, tempting me to ruin any good the swimming had done.
Brockwell Lido is something of a local landmark – an Art Deco Grade II listed building. And, while the cafe is homely and relaxed, it manages to serve up some wonderful food. On my last visit to the Lido Cafe I remember really enjoying the Longhorn beef burger, while my companions raved about their own choices. So I was more than happy to accept an invitation to go back and check out the new summer menu. The burger is still on offer along with a range of starters or small plates, salads and main courses. And, the same formula of simple food, locally sourced where possible, still seems to be in place.
We ordered a charcuterie board to share between us to start. It’s not actually intended for two but was more than enough for us both and at £8.00 something of a bargain. We particularly liked the homemade cucumber pickles – we’d actually already had a small portion to nibble on while we chose our food – but we still managed to finish the ones that came with the charcuterie. Of the meats on the charcuterie platter, I particularly liked the fennel salami. All of the charcuterie is sourced from a London supplier and it’s a good step up from the kind of thing you might buy in a supermarket.
We decided to share two salads between us as an accompaniment to our main dishes. The salads themselves are actually good enough to eat as a mail – I particularly like the spiced lentil and beetroot with pickled chilli, black sesame and dill yoghurt – that kind of deep, earthy mixture which works so well with a little yoghurt dressing. Our second salad, an altogether lighter affair, was sweet pea, edamame, tenderstem broccoli, green pistachio and spring onion. Each was priced at £3.75 had we ordered them separately.
My main course, char grill, marinated, free range chicken was perfectly cooked and not at all dry. The chicken was served on the bone, a good way to ensure that what is served is as tasty as possible, but one which does perhaps make the presentation a bit more of a challenge. Given the choice though, I’d go for flavour over presentation any day..
My companion loved her dry aged, long horn weeping tiger steak strips, which was nicely rare and very tender.
With our food we enjoyed a bottle of the ‘wine of the month’ Bobal de San Juan Rosado 2015, the kind of rose which seems to have been tailor made for al-fresco dining and at £22 a bottle seemed excellent value. It was nicely chilled and worked perfectly with the chicken while being substantial enough to stand up to the weeping tiger steak.
The accompanying salads were really quite substantial and we both felt suitably replete by the end of the main course.
Dessert or no dessert? When I’m reviewing dessert is mandatory. So, a warm salted caramel brownie with a scoop of vanilla gelupo gelato. Delicious. I might have tried asking for one to take home too, but I know it wouldn’t have made the whole journey…
I love Brockwell Park Lido Cafe. I need to get a bike because it’s only a 10 minute cycle ride from home. I might have to do just that very soon indeed.
The Lido Cafe
London SE24 0PA