A Boozer in Notting Hill – Walmer Castle:
We are losing our old-fashioned boozers at an alarming rate so it’s great to visit a place like The Walmer Castle in Notting Hill that feels and looks like a proper pub, but one with varied drinks menu and food you want to eat. Just down the road from Portobello Market, it has launched a new dining menu mixing up gastro-pub classics with a selection of British and Modern European small plates.There are always four seasonal ales available on draught alongside on-tap beers by small local cask brewers and craft masters, plus premium bottled beers from across the globe. And apparently their Bloody Marys are the ‘ideal Sunday afternoon sip.’But we were drinking a deliciously lemony Saint-Marc Chablis that was a great match with our crispy squid and deliciously oozy arancini small plates. Other starters include sloe gin smoked salmon with shaved fennel, grilled British asparagus with lime and crispy British Black Combe Ham and truffle oil and all of them sound good.For mains we tried a tender spatchcocked Gammon Steak with heritage potatoes slathered in a tasty creamy grain mustard sauce.I went for a classic Fish and chips attractively served on faux newspaper. The batter was excellent and the chips crisp. Tasty sounding sides include truffle mac ‘n’ cheese bites and trendy sweet potato fries but we didn’t go there!For dessert salted caramel profiteroles were as decadent as they sound and completely unmissable though I was tempted by the blueberry and lemon ricotta cheesecake. Whether you’re a local or checking out the antiques of Portobello Market, The Walmer Castle is a great option for lunch or dinner. Service is friendly and efficient, the interior is warm and cosy enlivened by the occasional idiosyncratic antique from the market, and the food is a cut above the average. The only problem is that it’s not around the corner from me!
The Walmer Castle
58 Ledbury Road
London W11 2AJ
020 7229 4620