Another illuminating week had passed, and another illuminating roast dinner was on the way – this time at The Cleveland Arms in Paddington.
Yep, this is me practicing going to Paddington, as the powers that be, or at least the powers that fund this blog (albeit I’ve been on teams generating 8-figure sums of incremental revenue WHILST WORKING FROM FUCKING HOME so really I’ve been funding them funding me), have decreed that thou shalt proffer most in thy office…if there are any free desks when I arrive, of course.
At least this was the week where sense prevailed to an extent, as the decree has been lessened for those who may need to deep think. As I do.
I cannot say sense prevailed elsewhere – for this was the week that shallow-thinking Liz Truss launched her campaign for “popular Conservatism”.
She’s cracked it (possibly more up than it) – what could make the Conservatives more popular, more electable? Yep, Liz Truss.
Also this week, Meghan gave King Charles cancer. At least that’s what I think I saw in the Daily Mail comments section. Well, at least it isn’t the fault of Liz Truss if we need a new head of state. This time, anyway.
And then over in the US of ehhhhh, esteemed prize-winning journalist, Tucker Carlson, managed to get what no other western journalist could apparently be interested in, and that was an interview with the democratically elected Vladimir Putin, to interrogate why he had to fight back against the UFO invasion that NATO launched after they impregnated the minds of those in Kyiv with immoral thoughts of freedom and goldfish.
Sigh. And you know I’m never going to get any decent roast potatoes ever again.
Oh, that’s smoother than a fresh jar of Skippy
And no I don’t look in the comments section of the Daily Mail – the only comments I need are your comments on my
blog work of literary genius. Holy crap, Tucker Carlson has actually won awards. Now I feel really under-rated. I’ve not even been nominated for an Emmy. 281 reviews now. No Emmy.
So I’ve never been to The Cleveland Arms, and we did make it to most pubs near Paddington in the 9 or so months prior to the contagious virus that spread around the world – and no, I’m not talking about Liz Truss’ Popular Conservatism.
It’s a fairly gorgeous pub inside, a small bar area at front, a small and cosy dining area at the back, where we were seated – and also a larger dining area downstairs. Dark wooden panelling, with dark teal walls in some places, or some kind of scratched-off surface in other places – as if someone has peeled off 100 year’s of wallpaper. It had a kind of cosy, comforting vibe – you could almost imagine this kind of pub in a country village.
I didn’t really look at the options, as I wanted pork belly – priced at £22.00. But you could have had chicken at £22.00, beef top side at £24.00 or roasted cauliflower at £18.00 should you still be doing Veganuary in February. What kind of psychopath carries on a January misery trend into February?
I ordered the pork belly, and a glass of apple juice.
Well, I’ll be hornswaggled
Our roasts took around 10 minutes to arrive.
Starting with…hmmm…you cannot see any of the vegetables.
Let’s start with the cutlery, shall we? The fork had clearly seen better days, but the butter knife which I dearly hope they don’t serve with steak, was so ineffective that you could take it onto an aeroplane.
The plate was white. And round.
Right, I think I’ve got the right amount of space between photographs now, so I can show you the vegetables. And then write about them. It’s Popular Inscription, don’t you know.
And the carrot was nice. Thanks for attending my TED talk, you can subscribe to my upcoming podcast by subscribing to my Patreon. Once I have £1,000,000 I will launch a podcast. Thanks for subscribing. Subscribe to my Patreon now, for a very special offer of 0% off. Buy two get none free.
That’s crazier than a Cleveland steamer
I really did like the parsnip – sweet and nutty, nicely roasted – the boy done good here. Or girl. Or trans…whoa careful or Rishi Sunak will take the piss out of what I’m saying here. Tosser. Though I bet that’s popular Conservatism in some realms.
Next up was the cabbage, which was very much wilted and mulchy in texture, but tasted good with the gravy.
We were back to the standard 3 roast potatoes – some evidence of crispy sides, but more evidence that they were cooked some time ago, as they felt tired and dead inside – a bit like Joe Biden’s eyes at 3pm.
The Yorkshire pudding was soft and fairly freshly cooked, yet seemed utterly devoid of any joy otherwise. It tasted as if the yorkie was doing Dry January. And telling you all about it. Repeatedly.
One of my accomplices had the chicken which was surprisingly flavoursome, with some kind of Indian spice flavour – garam masala was the one that came to mind when I had the wing.
Well, I’ll be a spotted hog in a polka-dot dress
My other accomplice had the roasted cauliflower, which was just cauliflower. Though apparently blanched rather than roasted – which makes it far less interesting. The vegan roast came without gravy by design, but the chef knocked some up on request, so kudos for that.
My pork belly slice was sadly rather small, and a way off perfection even if there was still some joy. Only one bite had any crunch, generally it was quite soft and gooey, though as in much of the roast, there was a sense that this could be better.
The gravy was quite consistent, I enjoyed the thickness – though tasted rather beefy.
And finally, the carrot. I didn’t need to do that weird introduction, did I? Was probably about as effective as Liz Truss’ speech announcing Popular Conservatism – you mean the party getting 46% in the polls isn’t popular? The latest poll I saw had Kier Starmer’s party on 46%. Is that not popular? I’m pretty sure it is Conservatism.
Oh yeah, the carrot was quite aniseed in flavour – cooked with star anise, I guess, and was long, sliced, with some softness. I liked the carrot.
Well, I’ll be sipping non-alcoholic cocktails at The Cleveland Arms
Yeah, kind of the same.
The Cleveland Arms offered one of those roasts where afterwards I couldn’t really tell if I had enjoyed it or not. I didn’t really have any criticism in such that nothing offended me. The pub itself was quite gorgeous, the service prompt and warm, the seating comfortable – the toilets poky, you wouldn’t want someone using the urinal next to you unless you enjoy hugging whilst peeing.
I quite enjoyed the pork belly, I quite enjoyed the vegetables, and I quite enjoyed the gravy. The yorkie was soulless, and the roasties somewhat done earlier – though I’ve had worse, much worse.
The vegan scored hers a 7.00, my accomplice a 7.20, and I think I’m scoring The Cleveland Arms a 7.07 out of 10. Respectable, and the pub is pleasant to be at.
There should be a roast dinner next Sunday but there is an obstacle to overcome – lesbians. Yes, my first ever lesbian wedding. No I’m not getting married. So the roast will depend on getting back to London logistics, via our wonderfully reliable train network.
The Cleveland Arms, Paddington
Tube Lines: Circle, Elizabeth, Hammersmith & City, National Rail
Fare Zone: Zone 1
Loved & Loathed
Loved: I quite enjoyed the pork belly, I quite enjoyed the vegetables, and I quite enjoyed the gravy. Cosy feeling pub too.
Loathed: The yorkie was soulless, and the roasties somewhat done earlier - though I've had worse, much worse. Oh and the butter knife for a roast...really?