I feel like I’ve been sat here for about 10 minutes trying to remember where I went on Sunday. Got it – The Mall Tavern in Notting Hill.
It’s been a week when we found out that we are being rewarded with another general election, and a week where I found out that there is such a thing called findom, where you can send money for women showing slightly more cleavage than average so that they can have a roast dinner.
The above one is probably how I’d look with a sex change. Also, I’m guessing this will mean nothing come the next general election (or even this one) as I doubt these Twitter accounts will last long. You can send me money if you want to, but I have no tits. As it stands. What was I writing about?
I have no tits
The Mall Tavern was originally scheduled for a few weeks back but I had to change my holiday dates due to selfish bastards at British Airways going on strike because pilots are not paid enough already apparently. Why can’t our MPs go on strike instead?
I felt like I was overdue a bad roast dinner – yet I suspected The Mall Tavern would be pretty good. However, they did their very best to irritate me, starting with the website where the home page consists of 10 photographs (on desktop anyway), where you have to hover over each one to find out what it does – except the 6 at the top you cannot quite see what they are, until you remove the banner. Of course, booking was the last one that I hovered over.
SQUARESPACE IS SHIT, FOLKS.
Upon entering, I found that our table for 4 people was right next to another table for 4 people which was almost next to another table for 4 people. Cosy, especially if you wanted the champagne-guzzling elder ladies to our left to be able to hear which amongst us on the table would be voting Conservative (what a delight to have a guest that is actually a Tory…can you guess whether he lives in London?).
Worse – the table to my right I believe, from photographic evidence, to have been from another Instagram roast dinner reviewer. What are the chances of having a roast dinner at the same time, on the table next to another roast dinner reviewer? Well, there are about 5,000 Instagrim roast dinner reviewing accounts in London, so fairly high. You only follow me, right?
I am sure that they were lovely people
Ahhhh. So the seating arrangements were cosy and the stumpy bar stool I was sat on was wonky and felt like it could collapse any minute. There was nowhere to put my wet coat except on the floor and elbow room wasn’t exactly over-generous either.
Fine dining this weren’t.
The venue itself was either rustic, shabby chic or a shit hole – depending on your outlook on life. My accomplices said that it reminded them of grotty pubs in Aldershot where they used to live, except for some neon lights. Tiles looked dirty, dead weeds hung from the mirror – yet the tables and chairs were at least clean. My kind of place.
And they had a pretty tremendous selection of beer.
Oh yeah – it was steamy kind of hot in there, and bloody loud – trying to pick out my accomplice’s words from the general clang and din of a rammed pub wasn’t always possible. Yikes, two weeks in a row that I’ve complained about things being too loud. And to think I used to go clubbing every weekend…where I used to complain about it being too quiet.
Moaning over? Well, not quite. It was a pretty good attempt by The Mall Tavern to trigger my rage but most important is food. Are you feeling tense yet? Did you send any money to the #findom ladies?
On the menu today at The Mall Tavern…
The menu only had two realistic options – ribeye of beef and pork belly. Seeing as I’d had pork last Sunday, that meant only ribeye of beef was available on my rules. Ribeye is my favourite cut of beef and I’d quite happily eat it every night of the week. And at £18, not too bad a price either. Though I cannot quite believe that I have got to the stage where £18 sounds about right.
Other options were a chicken sharer – which sounds like a ballache, and a nut roast, which even vegetarians must hate?
Our meals took around 20 or so minutes to arrive.
Starting with the carrots which were horizontally sliced, quite crunchy and seemingly buttered – certainly herby. Good, but not great.
The savoy cabbage was a bit odd tasting. I couldn’t quite put my finger on it – edible but a chore.
Two small slices of parsnip was the pick of the fairly meagre volume of vegetables – a tad too squidgy but really flavoursome and a sweeter than normal. Oh for more.
More veg please
Three large roast potatoes were supplied and all were crispy on the outside. However, inside they were either stale or just not quite soft enough but passable. I had two passables and one stale – others on the table had less luck. Fresher potatoes and less ambition on size, and these would have been very good.
The oversized Yorkshire pudding was actually the first that I’ve really enjoyed for quite a while. It looks a bit too brown (which reminds me to take the piss out of Nigel “7 time loser” Farage for being too chicken to run for parliament) but it was actually really soft. A really good Yorkshire pudding – an increasingly rare species, probably because of climate change. Oh look it rained yesterday – must be climate change.
And the ribeye beef was tremendously beautiful. Packing so much beefy flavour, with little globs of fat to take the taste to another level. We all had beef, and though my accomplices had a little gristle (allegedly – I wonder if it was just part of what makes ribeye so damn beautiful), we were all highly complimentary.
Finally the gravy – once the sufficient gravy otherwise known as extra gravy arrived. I’ve got a video for the wank bank.
Yes – thick gravy. Thick, meat-stock proper fucking gravy. Yes! It was so thick and gorgeous that it would have been enough for me to get an erection…at least when I was younger. Previous to my crystal meth years.
London – please take notice, this is what gravy is supposed to be. Stick your jus crap on other meals – leave it off our roast dinners.
Getting the important things right
This beef, yorkie and gravy combo was about as good as it gets – at least if you are looking for a proper tasty roast dinner, that is how roast dinners should be. IMHO but anyone that disagrees is a twat.
Most of the most important parts of a roast dinner were superb – everything was a bit patchy in delivery. Good parsnips but odd cabbage, good carrots but kind of Chris Grayling roast potatoes.
Having saved the best to last, it felt like a roast dinner that just kept getting better. Until I saw the receipt – and the £2 charge for “stag sauce”.
Oh, I meant to post this:
Just putting it out there (hello The Mall Tavern) but charging £2 for extra gravy when there was clearly not enough on my plate in the first place is fucking not acceptable. And London agrees. She has nice feet though, doesn’t she?
My accomplices had sufficient gravy on their plates – Lord Gravy, ironically had a shortage of gravy. I wonder how much I need to send her? Oh my, I wonder if she’d pour gravy on her feet. Also, I met a man the other day that could do the splits. A pretty manly man too. Maybe I should message her.
I’m not that good at writing headings
Scores around the table ranged from 7.5 (she is even harder to please than I), to an 8.2 from my most regular accomplice and an 8.5 from the Conservative Party member. I am so getting unfollowed for having a friend who is a Conservative Party member. Meh.
The actual roast dinner itself was really good – if you balance out the brilliance with the duds. Some of the most gorgeous beef and the sexiest, thickest proper gravy I’ve ever had doing this blog. Yet I feel the need to score it lower than it otherwise would.
Symbolically, I’m scoring it a 7.99 out of 10. Mostly due to charging for the extra gravy.
That and the manifesto of other annoyances like the heat, the noise, the crappy stubby bar stool, having to put my coat on the floor. Food-wise I should be scoring this around an 8.2, maybe an 8.3. I hardly ever rate down (or up) outside of actual roastdinnerness, but I make a fairly rare exception here. Oblix I rated slightly higher because the service was so superb, but I struggle to think of other similar examples.
I guess there is an argument that if I had got laid any time in the past 9 years then I might have overlooked this. But, you know, us incels gonna moan…in writing.
The final thing to mention was that the service was generally fine too, but you did have to be a bit European at times to get any attention. Otherwise it was perfunctory once you gained attention of someone. Yeah 12.5% service charge.
Also, who the hell are the 13% that think it acceptable to vote for extra gravy? I know we vote for some stupid outcomes in this country, but that is another level.
Next Sunday I’m going to the kind of place that is possibly more likely to do a crap roast that its clientele think is great. But I’m on a good run, maybe it will actually be great?
The Mall Tavern, Notting Hill, West London
Station: Notting Hill
Tube Lines: Central, Circle, District
Fare Zone: Zone 1