Thursday, January 20, 2011

Harwood Arms: Finding stars in the most unexpected!

Harwood Arms, a collaboration between Brett Graham (The Ledbury) , Mike Robinson (Pot Kiln pub in rural Berkshire) and Edwin Vaux (Vaux brewery). It piqued quite a bit of interest when it garnered a Michelin star and this is for food churned out in a gastropub.

Having been on both mine and Jen of DashiDashi ‘To eat’ list for a while now, we both decided to set a date and headed there together.

Harwood Arms is seriously a pub, there is nothing about its exterior that attracts your attention from the average Joe pub. It lies inconspicuously in a corner where I had to walk past a block of care homes and residential homes to reach.

We were the first table to arrive for their dinner service, guess we're both early dinner peeps! We decided to share so that we can try more of what is on the menu. Jen has been eyeing their roe deer and me, the scotch egg.


A basket of bread (potato and soda bread) was placed on our table to get us started. I have to say that the breads are fantastic! They make their bread in-house and my favourite was the potato bread. I can't rave enough about this.

Venison scotch eggs £3

Herefordshire snails and oxtail braised in stout with parsley breadcrumbs £8.25

The appetisers arrived and it was a nice surprise seeing the 6 individual snails placed on what looks like mini egg-cups. Dig in and you scoop out the snail and oxtail which goes very nicely with the stout and parsley breadcrumbs.

Next up was the scotch eggs. Please excuse my knife skills as I did not manage to slice it cleanly in half. Thin slice of venison coated in crumbs and fried, encasing a runny egg with the yolk oozing. No easy feat to get the venison crumbs crispy and crunchy with the egg still nicely cooked without turning rubbery. The venison by itself is quite salty but balances out with the creaminess from the egg yolk This is definitely far nicer that what I was served in my work canteen. I actually did not feel good after eating the scotch egg at work.

Having only discovered and eaten 3 scotch eggs in my life so far, I don't know if this is the Creme de la Creme but it is good.

Grilled steak of Berkshire roe deer and Douglas fir sausage with raw celeriac, spelt flat bread and field mushrooms £17.75

One thing I noted from The Ledbury is that Brett Graham knows his game and does it well. If you want to know how a more unusual meat like roe deer should be cooked and taste like, this would be the place to try and it certainly doesn't disappoint.

Braised shoulder of English lamb with purple sprouting broccoli, Rosemary broth, crispy haggis and green sauce £17.75

The Rosemary broth actually pairs well with the lamb. The broccoli was not overcooked which is what I seem to keep getting at a lot of places. However, I wish it had not been cooked until it lost it's crunchiness which is what I like.

Eton mess with caramelised apples, mincemeat and sherry jelly £7

Harwood Arm's version of the Eton Mess echoes Xmas pudding but a much lighter version. Very festive and appropriate for the holidays that just past.

Earl grey tea ice cream with prunes, vanilla doughnuts and lemon curd £8

I have never been a fan of Earl Grey ice cream when I tried it in other places and was surprised that I was enjoying this one. The prunes helped to add depth and accentuate the flavour of the Earl Grey.

Unfortunately we only had the table for two hours even on a weekday and the place was buzzing with diners when we left. The dinner came up to £35 for a 3 course exclusive of any wines.

Good quality food, nothing too fancy and not overwhelming is how I would describe it. Their scotch eggs and in-house bread I would come back for anytime. Who would have thought it would be a bar snack and side bread that steals the show.

Eateries should give due consideration to the quite often overlooked humble bread. It can often be that one tiny thing that differentiates a good experience and returning customers.

Fulham residents are blessed to have a pub like this in their area.

Harwood Arms, 27 Walham Grove, Fulham, SW6 1
Harwood Arms on Urbanspoon


  1. So, I have never eaten a Scotch egg. It just doesn't look nice. As you seem similarly suspicious towards the Scotch egg concept - tell me, is it worth trying or shall I remain blissfully ignorant?

  2. Ute - I think blissfully ignorant. Not worth a special trip but if you see it on a menu, you can give it a try.

  3. I don't mind scotch eggs but haven't yet tried a really spectacular one. I love the sound of this place-nothing like serendipitously good meals! :)

  4. Lorraine - Really nothing quite like serendipitiously good meals and great company too! =)

  5. Absolutely this place! Was there last year and already thinking about having another slow Saturday lunch there. Their bread and Scotch Eggs are quite something aren't they?

  6. theboywhoaretheworld - I would seriously go back for the breads alone. =)


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