Yesterday I had a bit of a situation. 1pm came, I had just finished a massive bit of work and I realised that I would be able to take my full lunch hour. Usually in this situation I would use the opportunity to catch up with a friend. However, it was a bit last minute and I knew that most of the usual suspects were otherwise engaged.
My lunch the day before had been a complete disaster (watery thai chicken soup from EAT) leaving me feeling unsatisfied and disappointed. I couldn’t risk that again so I made a bold decision decided to take myself off on a solo lunch!
I wanted to go somewhere that I could take a copy of The Stylist and enjoy a nice hot lunch without feeling conspicuous for being a solo diner. I decided on the bar in St Johns Bar & Restaurant. It is just down the road and serves bar snacks, which to me seemed more appropriate for solo dinning than ordering an actual meal. Plus the layout is very casual with lots of small tables for two so I could just blend in.
I must say it was a great success. I ordered myself some welsh rarebit and then decided I really ought to treat myself to a glass of red wine as well, although I went for the house so as not to feel too extravagent!
The welsh rarebit was really good. It was a traditional version which I guess started with a roux and then added mustard, cayenne, either ale or stout, worcestershire sauce and lots of strong cheddar cheese. An extra bottle of worcestershire sauce was available at the table. You really didn’t need it though, the welsh rarebit packed a punch already and was a long way from bog standard cheese on toast. In fact, I wished that I had ordered a salad to go with it just to cut through the richness.
By the time I finished my welsh rarebit I still had 25 minutes left and was thoroughly enjoying myself so I decided, as it was the first really chilly day of the year, I would order pudding.
I went for the bread and butter pudding with butterscotch sauce and what a treat it was! I am not a massive fan of bread and butter pudding but I wanted something warm and stodgy and I thought St Johns were bound to do a good one.
It actually turned out to be more like christmas pudding than any bread and butter pudding I had ever tried. I’m not sure this would be a good thing for everyone but I absolutely love christmas pudding so I was in my element. It was full of fruits, including candied orange peel and had a really strong caramel flavour throughout. Again the flavour was really powerful, so the vanilla ice-cream was a perfect accompaniment.
All in all I had a thoroughly enjoyable lunchtime with some solid 8/10 food. Yum!
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