The restaurant: Roast, The Floral Hall, Stoney Street, London SE1 1TL
I love a Sunday roast. Anytime, anywhere – providing it’s either my mam’s cooking or a reputable mashed potato-serving restaurant. A couple of months ago, I found Roast (or, as I was invited down, Roast found me). It’s a cool sun-streaked restaurant that overlooks Borough Market at London Bridge. Now, while many of you may have stored the roast dinner away with your winter coats and wellies, I didn’t and neither did Roast. Of course, we’re not talking stodge; we’re not even necessarily talking Sunday. We’re now talking brilliantly British roasted summer vegetables and roasted corn-fed chickens, mixed eclectically with English salads, cheddar soufflés, and cured meats all sourced in the UK.
The Roast menu is refined. The starters, mains and desserts complement each other. Dishes work together seamlessly. There’s no indulgence from the kitchen, it’s all about their ‘field to fork’ philosophy, catering for all, but not having any dishes that are horribly out of place. While Roast will serve up meaty mains, rib-eye steaks and a rather brilliant beetroot burger, I’ve gotta tell you about the summer staycation series.
This week it’s all about those moules frites. That’s right, Roast have landed in France and are dishing up mussels and fries to whip up some nostalgia from your French vacation. If you’re not fortunate enough to be holidaying this summer, Roast want to bring the holiday to London with dishes each week from around the world. Spain and Greece have already flown by but America will be setting down some fried chicken next week (w/c 1 Aug) and Portugal will be transporting us to Porto for some grilled sardines and roast pepper salad the following week (w/c 7 Aug). But isn’t the Roast philosophy to use simple British food from good old British farmers and fishermen? It is. The restaurant have cleverly crafted these dishes using only locally sourced ingredients. How brilliant is that?
We, very keenly, rocked up for Italy week. Dorset clams and crab linguine, which romantically hearkened back to my delicious Cinque Terre trip to the north coast of Italy. We tactfully kicked off with Carlingford oysters to recreate the whole coastal experience and my pal went for the scallops — both of these dishes were on the everyday menu and made cracking precursors to the Italy-styled main. For dessert, they’re still lovingly cooking up a Bramley apple crumble with delicate vanilla custard. There are a few new additions of Pimms jelly and ice cream, while Piña Colada panna cotta with pistachio ice cream will also take you back to your summer vacay.
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