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|Address:||222 South Ealing Road, London W5 4RL|
|Tel:||020 8758 1879|
|Price: £37.00||Wine: £15.50||Champagne: £34.95|
|Opening Hours:||Mon-Sun 12N-11pm (Fri-Sat -12M Sun -10.30pm)|
2 of 2 people found this review helpful.
Last night we went for dinner at The Ealing Park Tavern in South Ealing. The Ealing Park Tavern is a pub and restaurant. I wouldn't call it a gastro pub. I really would call it a pub and restaurant joined together.
The experience was both and good and bad. So let's start with the good.
I like how The Ealing Park Tavern has been styled. The dining room is large with the kitchen open. There are huge windows and a great garden perfect for those long summer days. There is a lot of dark wood and I like cosy feeling this creates.
I like the menu. Five starters, five main dishes and three puddings. Perfect. This to me shows that the kitchen are concentrating on quality, choosing great quality ingredients and cooking them fresh. I love it.
The staff are good. Extremely friendly, personable, fun and genuinely interested in whether you're having a good meal or not.
We arrived around 7.45pm and were greeted by a very nice manager. We could have had a drink in the bar but decided to go through to the table. The tables are closely packed together but we had an OK table in the main dining room. The dining room was already busy.
We were given menus and our waitress took our drinks order. We asked for a bottle of sparkling water and some tap water. When the bottle of sparkling water arrived it was warm and the glass didn't have any ice. We had to ask for a glass of ice just to make the water drinkable.
We were left with the menus for a while. Eventually our waitress came and took our order. However we had some questions about the menu. Although she was knowledgable, she had to go to the kitchen to ask the chef about some of our questions.
In the end we ordered the red mullet with prawns ands risotto and venison haunch as starters and the rack & saddle of lamb and beef cheeks with lyonnaise potatoes as our main courses. The waitress insisted we try the triple cooked chips so we placed an order for them as well.
OK, so now the bad.
Bread isn't automatically part of the table. So if we wanted bread we had to pay £3.50 for a basket of sour dough bread and butter. We declined. The starters arrived and looked OK, not great but OK. The red mullet was served with two king prawns on a chorizo risotto base. The red mullet itself was good but the risotto was mushy and had zero bite. I doubt it was even proper risotto rice. We're not sure where the chorizo went, it certainly wasn't in the risotto.
The venison haunch was served with puy lentils, wilted baby greens, hazelnuts and pomegranate. I liked the crunch of the hazelnuts in with the puy lentils and pomegranate seeds. It really needed more pomegranate seeds to take off the edge off the puy lentils. The sweetness worked so well against the puy lentils and hazelnuts. The baby wilted greens were tasty but a mouthful in size. The venison was pink but a little on the tough side. I was underwhelmed with the starters. We finished and the plates were cleared.
I hoped the main dishes would make up for the starters. Unfortunately not.
The beef and lamb arrived and looked good. Better than the starters. Let's start with the beef cheeks. The beef was plentiful, a mixture of fillet and braised. It was beautifully cooked. It came with lyonnaise potatoes. They were unbelievably hot. In fact microwave hot. They were dry and a little tasteless.
The lamb came pink. I have to say it wasn't the best lamb I've ever tasted. The saddle was slightly cold and watery. The rack was better but not very clean so lots of bone and sinew. The lamb came with hispi cabbage which was very good and poached pears which seemed a little lost. A separate shepherds pie was served on the side. There was very little sauce so the dish was dry. I question the quality of the meat to be honest.
The triple cooked chips were as far from triple cooked as you could get. They were anaemic, bland and soggy. In fact we sent them back and the manager removed them from the bill.
We hoped pudding would redeem the meal. We ordered a chocolate tart with salt caramel ice cream and a steamed sponge with creme anglaise.
We had a good break inbetween the main course and pudding which was great. I like that they slowed down the service to give us time. Brilliant.
The puddings arrived. The salt caramel ice cream was half melted on the plate which was a shame. However it tasted good. The chocolate tart was good too. The steamed sponge looked good but again had been microwaved to the point of boiling. I like food served at the right temperature but this was ridiculous. It completely spoiled the pudding.
We finished the pudding and had an Irish coffee to finish.
My review of the Ealing Park Tavern may seem a little harsh. However when the bill comes in at nearly £90 for two people then you can't help but ask questions. For not much more we could have eaten in Central London in a top class restaurant so one can't help but compare.
I guess the question is would I go back again? Perhaps it was an off night? Maybe we need to try lunch or dinner again? There are so many things that are right about the Ealing Park Tavern and we were willing it to be the perfect meal. I think it's a case of must try harder. Sorry guys.