Dining in White City Place at the Wellbourne Brasserie White City:
I’ve lived around the Shepherds Bush and White City area for many years and Wood Lane in White City was always considered a bit of a wasteland other than housing the iconic BBC Television Centre, however over recent years it has completely transformed with an ever-rising skyscape, and become a home for shopping and for media and techie types. First with the arrival of Westfield shopping centre, then the campus for Imperial College, next the private members club White City House (part of the Soho House group), then new housing, and now the new cultural development at White City Place which houses the BBC along with many other business and shops and restaurants and includes the Wellbourne Brasserie White City.
I was invited along to the Wellbourne Brasserie, which opened in five months ago to try out their Sunday menu. The successful team behind the Wellbourne Brasserie White City already has a proven record in the restaurant business, with two restaurants under their belt, one in Bristol and another in Northern Spain.
Headed up by owner and Head Chef Ross Gibbens, who has worked in some of the Uk’s leading restaurants including Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons, Launceston Place, The Square, The Vineyard in Berkshire and Dabbous and Michael Kennedy who originally came from New Zealand, coming to the UK in 2008 spending time under Richard Corrigan at his Mayfair restaurant. Michael then moved on to Launceston Place, where he first met Ross, following Dabbous where he was Senior Sous Chef, he relocated to Bristol to work at Wallfish Bistro ahead of opening the Wellbourne Brasserie White City.
The Wellbourn Brasserie has an airy contemporary feel to it, simply furnished with clean lines with solid wooden tables and chairs and a colourful blue wall and metal furnishings. The main restaurant seats 40 and there’s a bar, a communal table and an eight-seater private dining room, which I am told comes with its own enomatic wine dispenser! It hosts an expansive Southern facing al fresco terrace which seats 80 people and is perfect for summer dining, with an outlook over the green in White City.
It was a hot and sunny Sunday afternoon on the day of my visit and my friend and I were both delighted to be able to sit in the shade of the terrace and enjoy a leisurely lunch.
Sundays at the Wellbourne are dedicated to brunches and Sunday roast, quite different to their weekday menu, which offers a more extensive choice of unfussy, modern British cuisine.
We kicked off with a refreshing aperitif, a glass of perfectly chilled Cava and an Aperol Spritz.
Manager Tom brought us a plate of delicate vol-au-vents, which are one of Wellbourne’s specialities; these came with three different fillings in a wonderful light buttery pastry and were an excellent start to our meal.
The English pea and ewe’s cheese was deliciously fresh and creamy with a touch of mint, the Salt Cod brandade was divinely light and not too fishy, and the pulled lamb shoulder & violet mustard was very tasty, steeped in a rich red wine and mustard sauce.
I was lunching with my Spanish friend who noticed the Spanish influences in the menu, and we were impressed by the wine list, which offered a good selection of wines from around the world with the option of small and medium carafes as well as bottles. This made it easy when I fancied drinking white and my friend wanted red.
I accompanied my meal with a carafe of Mesta: Organic Verdejo: Rueda: Spain – this was the perfect summers wine, light, smooth and mineral with citrus notes.
My friend enjoyed a full-bodied smooth, dry rich berry based Reserva Tempranillo – Mazuela-Garnacha – a Spanish Rioja.
The roast rump of beef was finely sliced, succulent and perfectly pink.
I chose the pulled shoulder of lamb with mint sauce, it had been slow cooked and it was tender, flaky and very flavoursome, just how I like my lamb!
Both meals were served with sweet glazed carrots, spring greens, Yorkshire pudding, crispy roast potatoes, and some delicious cauliflower cheese. There was also a vegetarian option available.
We cleansed our pallet with some lovely lemon leaf sorbet.
And our final treat was an excellent English Cheeseboard, including a Berkswell blue, ewe’s milk cheese from Bristol and Blue Bay accompanied by some with crisp rye crackers.
I’m rather excited about the arrival of Wellbourne in my neighbourhood and look forward to returning to try out their weekday menu, which also looks rather delicious!
Sunday roast served between 11.30 am to 5 pm
£20 including afters of ice cream or sorbet
95 Wood Lane,
London W12 7FQ
Phone: 020 3417 4865