The Cadogan Arms, Chelsea

I’ve been to The Cadogan Arms in Chelsea and now I want a fight.

I’m not really the fighting type. “We charge for extra gravy is that ok?”.

Fuck no is it ok, give us enough in the first place.

That’s in my head, of course.

“Yeah totally fine and I’m totally fine with the £1 charity donation on the bill that you didn’t tell us about for your virtue signaling so you can say how much your customers were forced to you raised for charity. Oh and the 13.5% service charge.” Though they did earn their service charge…fair play to my accomplice who asked them around 25 times for something, to really get her service charge’s worth.

It’s probably the King’s Road that annoyed me. Walking back, searching for somewhere to have a beer in the sunshine – something which in 2024 seems as rare as a policy from Kier Starmer (no wonder they are 20 points ahead in the polls), and as I weave in and out of people who should practice walking on side streets first before attempting main roads, my shoulder bag’s strap snaps, the bag falls onto the floor with a thud, along with my new work MacBook.

Said new MacBook, which as per the Apple ownership rule 1.12 I am obliged to point out to you is very expensive and powerful, was only returned to me 8 days ago. MacBook ownership rule 2.23 also requires me to point out that it was completely my fault that the screen just randomly stopped working and is absolutely nothing to do with the build quality.

The expensive, powerful MacBook still works. But I need a new bag. And we didn’t find anywhere to have a beer in the sun. Oh well, I’m sure it will be sunny again at some point in the next month.

Ravey Davey

It’s a bit unfair on The Cadogan Arms to start on a ranting mood – though they didn’t always help matters.

The Cadogan Arms is one of the few places on the to-do list that I had the highest expectations for. I’d mentioned a while back about having 3 interesting roast dinners coming up – and this is the 3rd.

Alas, Booking Office 1869 was more style than substance, and Clink Restaurant was more…society than the Big Society.

Still there’s always someone out there to cheer us up:

Ed Davey falling into a lake
Fair Use

Not building any houses.

Get on your bike…still not building any houses.

And we’re not in favour of re-joining the EU either!

I Need More Gravy

Anyway, The Cadogan Arms – it’s even more highly rated than a Lib-Dem election stunt, and rather gorgeous inside. A classical feel to it, deep dark wooden panelling with a gorgeous lit-up backdrop the the bar itself.

I was amazed at getting a Steady Rolling Man for £6.00, but less so when I realised that it wasn’t a pint. Apparently they cannot sell it in a pint as it costs too much, though when I later ordered two halves in a pint glass, it came to £7.70 which is just standard in 2024. Also a surprise that they think £7.70 is too much for a pint of beer, when their cheapest bottle of wine costs £38.00, and an expresso martini is £14.00.

Roast Dinner menu at The Cadogan Arms, Chelsea

Now if you are going to charge £34.00 for beef it needs to be a classier cut than rump for me…granted I’m then left with a choice of chicken at an eye-popping £31.00 or the vegan at an eye-gouging £28.00. When I started reviews regularly in 2017, the average price was £15.61.

I went for the chicken.

Chicken roast dinner at The Cadogan Arms, Chelsea

I’m surprised YouGov haven’t done a poll to ask people which vegetable the political leaders are (well, maybe they have, I haven’t looked), and I’ve no idea which political leader the carrot is so this is fairly pointless, but then again most of what I write is. The carrot was really soft and had a hint of tarragon to it.

The cabbage was slippery, so you could compare it to Rishi Sunak…or Kier Starmer…or Ed Davey…or…do the Green Party have a leader? Anyway, soft, slippery and a little buttery.

Then we had a thick lump of…bravo to Tommy Robison for scraping 10,000 thicko’s for a march through London…I was a bit worried as that’s more scumbags that I realised we had, but then I remembered that approximately 32,000,000 people will be voting for non-fascist parties in a few week’s time (Tories are just about non-fascist in my book, your mileage may vary), so fuck Tommy Robinson and fuck all the morons paying your cocaine habit. Do I need lawyers for that? No, I think his boasting covers it.

Oooh your hard, a bit like the stalk of the broccoli – I quite admire The Cadogan Arms for just serving a chunk of broccoli, and not even bothering to cut it up. There was totally nothing special about it, it was just broccoli, steamed with a bit of a bite to it, but not too much, bar the stalk.

Wavey Wavey

Four roast potatoes. Four! Is this a new Ed Davey stunt?

The vegetables were fairly ordinary, but I hadn’t disliked them – and I didn’t dislike the roast potatoes either. In fact…shock alert…they were good. Soft in the middle, I’d even go so far as saying they were pretty fluffy. And some evidence of crisp on the outside – I’d say the photo makes them look crispier than it felt like at the time, but take nothing away, these were good.

Roast potatoes at The Cadogan Arms, Chelsea

The Yorkshire pudding was a bit dead really. Kind of tough and tearable texture, it felt a bit old, a bit heat-lamped – though I’ve had far worse.

I’d made the right choice for the meat, as the beef was tougher than I’d expect – quite chewy with lots of fat. I do like fat, but what I tried just hadn’t been rendered enough. It doesn’t look that good, does it?

Beef roast dinner at The Cadogan Arms, Chelsea

Thankfully, for me, the chicken was really plump and juicy. The skin was a bit soggy, and that it had been slow-cooked meant it looked paler than a patriot (sigh), at least before they start thinking about bloody foreigners – yet it was supreme compared to the beef rump.

And there was some stuffing inside, and by the side – by the side was a little piece of pork sausagemeat stuffing, and inside was a more creamy and herby affair – I’d suggest something like Philadelphia, though the menu doesn’t allude to any such thing.

Finally, the gravy. Yes, there wasn’t enough of it, and yes they charged us £1.50 for extra. Mine was pretty ordinary and watery, it did have a fair flavour to it – but when I tried some of the extra gravy, which was the bone marrow gravy, that did pack a bit of a punch to it. Alas – also very watery.

The Cadogan Arms. I’m Not Too Ravey About It.

Of the 3 roast dinners that I was looking forward to, this was the one I had highest expectations for, and I guess it proved true – though all 3 fell short of expectations.

In fact, last week I said, “if it isn’t in the 8’s, I’ll be shocked”.

Meme - "Hi Rishi, it's Michelle from Mone Military Uniforms"

Well, I be shocked…just. I cannot quite put it in the 8’s.

I do worry my ranting has given The Cadogan Arms more of a negative slant than it deserves, I stress that it was still a good roast dinner – very good in places, with fairly crispy roast potatoes and an impressively plump chicken breast to enjoy. On the flip side, the yorkie was dead, there wasn’t enough gravy and they charged for extra, plus it was rather pricey.

My accomplice who got her money’s worth of service charge scored it an 8.00 – disappointed on the beef, but really liked the venue. My vegan accomplice a 7.50 – who wasn’t convinced celeriac and mushroom worked well together, and my regular accomplice a 7.30 – also disappointed with the beef.

My score is a 7.73 out of 10. High expectations letting me down, but it is the best roast dinner that I’ve had for a few weeks.

No roast dinner next weekend as I’m in Bilbao, and, yes it is going to rain most days there, with little sunshine…even worse…nowhere sells a roast dinner in Bilbao. I’ll be back the weekend after when everything gets a bit complicated and UEFA start putting England games on roast dinner days. Going to be a tough Monday following.

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The Cadogan Arms, Chelsea

Station: Sloane Square

Tube Lines: Circle, District

Fare Zone: Zone 1

Price: £31.00

Rating: 7.73

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Loved & Loathed

Loved: Fairly crispy roast potatoes and an impressively plump chicken breast to enjoy.

Loathed: The yorkie was dead, there wasn't enough gravy and they charged for extra, plus it was rather pricey.

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