The Eagle has landed…
So many pubs have disappeared from our cities, towns and villages that being asked to review a new pub in Ladbroke Grove feels like a rare treat. I was on a Notting Hill staycation at the glamorous The Portobello Hotel so I trotted down the Grove for some dinner to The Eagle.I found a pub that not only looked like a proper boozer, full of locals engrossed in the weekly pub quiz but was serving freshly brewed Truman’s beer straight from glorious copper tanks above the bar. For the younger reader , Truman’s was a traditional brewery that went out of business a long time ago! The Eagle is owned by Hippo Inns who are wanting to create pubs that sit at the heart of their communities and this in my opinion is a good thing. But I had come to try out the food and drink offer not to wax lyrical about the owner’s aspirations. There was another surprise ahead as the menu which is seasonal and British has a Bavarian twist.I started off with a glass of Raw Truman lager which was crisp, fresh and hoppy. But with the meal I wanted wine and went for an unoaked Chardonnay, de Wetshof Estate, South Africa 2016 that had a lot of fruit and with a hint of sweetness. Pickled herring with dill potatoes, sour cream (£7) is a classic Northern European dish but in this version the sour cream was flavoured with beetroot adding a earthy flavour to the dish which I loved.Gin-cured salmon Blinis, crème fraiche (£8) was a beautifully plated dish. The gin cure on the salmon gave it a salty, fishy flavour.Really fresh dressed Dorset crab came with saffron aioli that needed some saffron (!) and crisp fries (£18). This is the sort of pub food that it is a pleasure to find in the middle of a city.A simply grilled Brixham Plaice, capers, crayfish, smoked butter (£14.50) was a wonderful firm-textured piece of fish with sweetness coming from crayfish and just a hint of smoke from the butter.Tossed mixed leaves (£3.75) were fresh and crunchy with a good vinaigrette.Banoffee pancakes (£6) were a bit heavy – a Banoffee Pie might have been a better option…and forest fruit and almond cobbler, custard and mulled wine (£6) was overcooked and dry.
The Eagle is one of the new breed of pubs reviving the traditional British institution with proper beer, good food but also a series of offers to draw in the local crowd. As well as the pub quiz they run a ‘What’s Your Beef Wednesdays’, a Saturday £25 bottomless brunch with an endless supply of Bloody Marys or Prosecco, live music on Fridays and Sunday roasts. If you live in the area or are visiting it’s well worth a visit.
250 Ladbroke Grove,
London W10 5LP
0203 757 8051