And…action. Welcome back to Roast Dinners In And Around Harrow and anywhere I dare risk the mask stasi whilst wearing a chin strap that does fuck all even if I wear it properly. This week featuring The Bridge Hotel in Greenford. Greenford is near Harrow. And is a shithole.
Chill out, I wore a mask, but I’m damn well going to moan about it.
Now, where were we?
Oh yeah, Brexit. I know I’ve been against leaving the European Union for years, but thanks to the assistance provided to me at the re-education facility over recent months, I am now fully aware of all the benefits of Brexit and am ready to participate in ensuring a world-beating, smooth and easy Brexit that we will all appreciate even more than a bowl of peas. And who doesn’t love peas?
I’m excited about the Brexit dividend, I’m excited about Britain finally holding all the cards. The NHS will get £350m extra every single year, we will be a major part of the World Trade Organisation – we get their deals which as the name suggests, will be world-beating.
We are going to be so world-beating, that you could even say that we are going global.
Not everyone is going global
I didn’t go global on Sunday. There was little global about Greenford.
Yeah I know I could have picked somewhere more popular for my comeback than a pub in an area of London that you didn’t even know existed, but I’m sure you are really here for me as the Free Lord Gravy campaign proves, and you simply want to read the beautiful words that come out of my unique level of genius.
Besides, I loathe masks (I did originally put “mosks” which would really have taken this post to another level) and find it impossible to breathe in them. However whilst I may now fully appreciate the value that our Independence from the EUSSR will bring to us, I still don’t have the balls to get a tube without a mask for my fear of the mask stasi. Therefore two stops of the tube was quite enough before I felt the shame of my dehumanisation.
Ahhhhh it always worries me when I agree with a Corbyn, even if it is Piers this time. Well I don’t think I ever agreed with Jezza. Ever. Jezza. Wow. Yeah that doesn’t actually thyme, does it?
You missed me, right?
Anyway, so it is game on. I am back, fully re-educated and ready to support our world-beatingly competent government. Oh and nearly as important, keep on finding the best and worst roast dinners in London.
Given the difficulties over masks, for the time being I’ll only be reviewing roasts in central or north London – basically anywhere where I can get to with only 10-15 minutes on a tube/train. Maybe my lungs will get used to them, but I’m hoping that Piers Corbyn persuades enough people not to wear them so I feel that I can also break the rules. Anyone else think that there is a gap in the market for people who think masks are bullshit yet are very excited about 5G?
On my way to The Bridge Hotel
Sunday I was hungover to fuck. Seriously hungover. I don’t remember getting home, or whether I wore my mask…I probably did because I wanted to offend people by that point.
Mine is in a lighter shade of blue though.
I had to bring my booking forward just to get the whole mission over and done with. Two stops on a tube and a 30 minute walk – which was uphill on the way back. Yeah, that hurt.
The Bridge Hotel restaurant was empty when I arrived. I couldn’t see any other customers, though I think there was one in the other room. Greenford isn’t exactly a destination location. Good access to a big road but I’m not interested enough to work out which road.
Though it says on the sign if you care. My expectations were already low. This or the various stabby looking types staring at me didn’t improve my expectations.
However, I did get a pleasant welcome – perhaps because the solitary member of staff was excited to have something to do.
A beer arrived quickly, Camden Pale Ale was about as interesting as it got, and there was a choice of two roasts.
Chicken at £14.50 or sirloin of beef with ox cheek croquette for £16.50. In Greenford. Sounds good, no? Also the vegetarian sounded interesting until I got to the chickpea bit and also realised that I was in a pub and 2020 has already offered enough dehumanisation.
Feeling some inspiration from my Morrison’s roast dinner back in central lockdown when it wasn’t too dangerous to visit a supermarket without a mask, I did consider ordering a side of chunky chips. But I just went for the chicken – it felt like the easiest option for my extreme hangover, though I had forgotten about the knife and fork bit.
A bridge to the next paragraph
My roast took around 15 minutes to arrive, time enough for me to just about drink two sips of my beer.
Starting with the carrots. Oh the carrots. How I’ve missed being able to think of yet another way of describing carrots to you. These were plump and juicy, almost fruity. Chunky too. I approved.
Then there was this concoction of “crushed roots” which tasted more of swede than anything else, and seemed like it was part of another winter warmer type of dish altogether, say Shepherd’s Pie but not Shepherd’s Pie if you know what I mean. No, probably not. But I liked it also.
Some cabbage was supplied. A little crunchy. I don’t have anything else to say except to take the opportunity to thank those behind the “Free Lord Gravy” campaign, though I cannot find the website or the petition or the social media accounts, I am most appreciative of your support. My lawyer was fucking useless, for sure.
Also there was a tiny amount of creamed leeks. Joy, but mixed up with the cabbage and not easy to disentangle, and not much – yet the limited cream still managed to pollute the gravy.
Roast potatoes…a bridge too far?
Three roast potatoes were supplied, all large. These were definitely cooked after lockdown and not before, but were still reassuringly crap. Too large, too undercooked in the middle, though at least one was properly crispy on the outside – albeit “yesterday” kinda crispy.
I’ve had worse, and I almost certainly will have worse again. The only part of the roast that let the side down. Ahhhh normality really has resumed.
Despite not having had a Yorkshire pudding not made in a factory since March, I cannot say I have missed them. Heresy, I know. This was fine, a little crunchy but not overly, and softened somewhat with gravy.
The chicken was really good. The breast was cut into chunks, hence the weird white thing near the top of my plate, but all really juicy and succulent. The drumstick fine, whatever, the thigh nice and juicy too.
And finally the jus…oh wait…the gravy. Yes, an attempt at actual gravy. It had some consistency – nothing mega thick but pleasing. An inoffensive taste, which is exactly what I required.
Though you’ll be relieved to know that extra gravy arrived in a thimble. Ahhhh, normality.
Overall, my expectations were bettered. Sure, the roast potatoes were crud and nothing was especially stand-out, perhaps the juicy chicken I’ll remember with most fondness.
I cannot give it a strong enough recommendation for you to travel from say Crystal Palace to The Bridge Hotel in Greenford for a roast even without a mask, but if you are in the local area its worth checking out. And they have a big road nearby. Maybe you could drive there?
I’m scoring it a very respectable 7.20 out of 10. Sort the roasties out, and it would have been high 7’s. No service charge and I couldn’t pay a tip because tips could only be in cash and I’m from the 21st century.
And then I had the 30 minute walk back up the hill. And masks. Have I moaned enough about masks? At least I am now a reformed Brexiteer. Let’s go global. GLOBAL.
I will be back next week. Yes, I will.
So how was that for you?
Missed me, right?
Feels good inside, huh?
You love me, right?
See you next week. Gravy.
The Bridge Hotel, Greenford, West London
Station: Sudbury Hill
Tube Lines: Piccadilly
Fare Zone: Zone 4
Loved & Loathed
Loved: The juicy, plump chicken
Loathed: The roast potatoes were reassuringly crud