I was a little nervous this week because I’d chosen to go a pub that follows me on Twitter – the Perry Hill Pub in Perry Hill, who messaged me last year to say they’d love it if I visited.
Perry Hill is even more of a ballache to get to than most places from my dingy house-share in Harrow where my housemate has taken to storing rotten food on the kitchen surfaces because she refuses to empty the bin.
South London isn’t exactly famed for having an over-abundance of connectivity, but Perry Hill really was as far as you can get from a tube/train station – a true TFL temporal dead zone:
Could you beeeeeee any further from a train station?
However, pictures of the roast dinner and the furthest pub in the world from a train station had tweaked my interest, so I promised to go at some point in the next 15 years before their lease ran out.
And here I was, getting ready for a roast dinner that I was slightly nervous about – it is more difficult to be critical to charming community pubs that follow you (and importantly are one of my 2,000 followers I AM IMPORTANT NOW), and that have messaged me…dreaming of Lord Gravy bestowing them with his/her presence like people in small towns dream that the Queen will visit them.
Except, one of my followers then said this:
THIS AIN’T GOVERNMENT PROCUREMENT. I have integrity you know. Yes we were singing Atomic Kitten together during the summer. But in my defence, Jack Grealish was on the bench.
Up The Hill
Besides, Boris Johnson has repeatedly assured us that procurement was done fairly and with integrity, as the resignation of the minister responsible for efforts to counter fraud will clarify. And if you believe that, then I have an alt coin that you can invest in.
Though seriously (maybe), I’m going to make a roast dinner coin. You should invest in it. You’ll make enough to buy Blacklock. Do your research and you can become rich.
Ooooh maybe I could call it Gravycoin.
And you would be entitled to free gravy at every participating outlet for life. And invited to gravy wrestling contests with topless northerners, albeit possibly only me.
About that research though…
I haven’t even made GravyCoin and already its been labelled a scam.
I AM NOT PART OF THE FUCKING GOVERNMENT YOU KNOW.
Oh well, maybe just sign up to my Patreon instead if you want to give me money. Now that I have 2,000 followers I should be important enough to demand payment from you all, and help fund my deposit for a flat, especially seeing as most of you will be from the south so will already have lots of money and probably 8 houses…all that avocado and toast you eschewed when you were young…and look at me and all the drugs I consumed. I mean, all the roast dinners I have consumed.
Up The Perry Hill
When we finally made it to the Perry Hill Pub after 3 tube trains, 1 train train and a 2 hour walk, we found a pleasantly dressed and busy community-feel pub – it had a vibe of a successful little venture, and a very large garden for that long glorious summer that I’m sure we’ll have.
Oh by the way, the 2 hour walk was our choice – it is “only” 17 minutes walk to the nearest train station. My accomplice is in training for some 26 mile walk – don’t worry, I’m not that stupid. But I’ll do 5 miles to work a bit of a fat man sweat up. I was actually rather warm by time we approached, wishing I had not worn a thick jumper, and I joked, “I bet they seat us next to the fire”.
I didn’t know that they had a fire. But they did seat us right next to the fire. And if that piece of insightful genius doesn’t persuade you to invest in GravyCoin, I don’t know what will.
Anyway, I sat down for 5 seconds, decided that I couldn’t cope and went to ask the waitress if they could magic up another table. And after a bit of screen-tapping, we were swapped for possibly the only other spare table. If that isn’t a good reason to score them highly even with watery gravy, then I don’t know what is.
Watery gravy? Ah. Check.
Suppose I should show you the menu first. But let me propose my alt coin to you one more time, as I don’t think you are convinced. Think about it…you could spend £16.50 on a pork belly roast like I did, or you could spend £16.50 lots of times on GravyCoin. Always read the small print (phew – no peas). Shorthorn rump of beef or chicken also available.
Up The Perry Hill Pub
Our meals took around 10 minutes to arrive – sometimes I frown upon such speedy food delivery when out for a meal, but after a 2 hour walk, I was very happy to receive food quickly. Maybe they could sense my ravenous desires (for food), but I suspect everyone is served quickly.
Starting with the carrot mash – often if carrot is mashed then there tends to be swede also – my accomplice thought she detected it. I didn’t. Either way, it was a good start to the roast.
Not much to say about the savoy cabbage, but it was good, worked well with the gravy, had a little crunch but not too much.
Then the cauliflower cheese. Which we paid £7.00 for as a side for two.
I’m not sure we would have finished it if we had liked it, as there was arguably too much here. Though the cauliflower was soft (albeit charred in places), something wasn’t right – I think about the sauce, and it managed to both not taste of much and leave a yacky aftertaste – not especially nasty, but it kind of felt like I’d eaten a teaspoon of flour afterwards.
Just think, if you invest in my GravyCoin, we will both become rich, and I’ll have to take the bin out less often than I do now because it will just be my rubbish in my new flat.
Stick These Stupid Headings Up Your Bum.
The roast potatoes looked good but were a mixed bunch in reality. All had some evidence of crispyish edges, the large one was quite undercooked inside, one was cooked enough but a bit dry inside, another was good. Which might not sound amazing but is better than the London average. Just. My accomplice had a 2/3 good/bad ratio so she was happier.
Apparently it was Yorkshire Pudding Day on Sunday (why does everything need its own day now?) so suitably this yorkie was a bit meh. Kind of a tearable texture – the positive was that it seemed reasonably freshly cooked and was quite soft, the negative that it tasted rather floury. Not sure why I finished it.
Ah man, told you I was nervous. Being critical of somewhere that follows me and that has a community feel. Plus…I’ve been spotted:
Thankfully, the pork belly was very good. Now, the crackling edges were a bit rubbery and hadn’t quite got to the crispy crackling stage – close but not quite there. But the tenderness of the meat, the gooeyness next to the crackling and the flavour were all top-notch. Phew.
Not only that, my accomplice said her beef was the best she’s had this year – very soft and tender.
I appreciate that the further south you go, the thinner the gravy gets – and the Perry Hill Pub is one of the furthest south places that I have reviewed. So the gravy was thin. But I thought it tasted really good, it had a good meat stock base to it. I had to ask for extra, but you know…London.
Perry Hill Pub
So a bit like the average alt-coin, there were ups and downs – and no, it isn’t going to overturn the financial system.
It’s a tricky one to score as I’m being pulled in both directions by my thoughts. On the one hand, the roast potatoes had failings, the yorkie was meh and floury, and the cauliflower cheese was yacky – again I suspect too much flour…or something went wrong, not in a hugely bad way but enough to disappoint. Then again – I didn’t need to order the cauliflower cheese (will I remember this next week?).
Yet the gravy tasted good, the carrots/cabbage were good and the pork belly was very good – I’m always tending to the happy when the meat and gravy are pleasing.
My accomplice scored it a 7.50 out of 10. I’m scoring it a 7.16 out of 10, which is respectably good – if everything was like the pork belly then it would be low 8’s.
I like what they are doing here – if I lived in the area then it would definitely be my local. They are a proper community-feel pub, with some really good food on – I noticed they did roast meat rolls during the week which just sounds like my idea of midweek heaven. A large garden for summer drinks – one assumes they have a really good beer selection but I didn’t look. Plus, they have Derek’s Dog Show on 19th February.
You could even argue that it is the best roast for miles. Granted I haven’t reviewed many in the area.
So maybe don’t travel to Perry Hill Pub if you live in Harrow (though certainly don’t eat in Harrow either), but if you are in the broad area then give it a whirl. I think you’ll like the Perry Hill Pub.
I’ll be back next week. Probably going to another pain in the ass place because I live in Harrow. Oh and I’m trying to tick off some awkward places during Dry February. Hell…I might even go east.
So did I manage to keep my integrity and not be a dick? Also, buy my GravyCoin. I have 2,000 followers you know.
Perry Hill Pub, Perry Hill
Station: Catford Bridge
Tube Lines: National Rail
Fare Zone: Zone 3
Loved & Loathed
Loved: Pork belly was very succulent, gravy really tasty (though thin). Pub has a really good locals vibe to it.
Loathed: Roast potatoes were a mixed bunch, yorkie was floury, cauliflower cheese had a strange aftertaste,