Made In Camden

The Roundhouse, Chalk Farm Road , London, NW1 8EH

  • Made In Camden
  • Made In Camden

SquareMeal Review of Made In Camden

Made in Camden hit the ground running in 2010, and has never looked back. Its location within The Roundhouse means that things can get chaotic when there's a show on, but staff usually manage to cope; at other times, simply kick back and graze your way from the Middle East to Asia with a choice of ‘instantly addictive' small plates full of ‘dizzying' twists and turns. Top calls have included sweet potato and endive crumble, crispy hake tempura with grilled broccoli and a sweet-and-sour kaffir-lime sauce, and ‘springy' deep-fried calamari dunked in chilli aïoli then smothered with pumpkin jam. Meanwhile, brunch offerings such as balsamic mushrooms on toast with marinated ricotta are a delicious break from the weekend norm. Cocktails are also given the funky treatment in this populist cultural cantina.

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6.6

Food & Drink: 7.8

Service: 5.4

Atmosphere: 6.0

Value: 6.0

Food & Drink: 2.0

Service: 1.0

Atmosphere: 1.0

Value: 1.0

Kim S. 30 December 2012

Very disappointing All sharing dishes which were served one after the other and not altogether – condiment flavours were overpowering – service slow and unattentive – steak arrived lukewarm- was charged an additional £1.50 for four small finger sized pieces of bread even after mentioning that the steak was cold. Obviously not interested in returning custom. And we won’t be!

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 2.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 4.0

Jonny Garrett bronze reviewer 02 October 2012

Playing at the Roundhouse at the moment is the brilliant “Oh Fuck Moment”. I had my own moment downstairs in the venue's café, Made in Camden. It may sound like a desperate channel 5 ploy to cash in on the pretense and stupidity of Made in Chelsea, but there are no cameras and certainly no egos. The food, presented as a global take on tapas, is often experimental, but never in a smoke-and-mirrors Heston way. You can tell the chefs were once students of Yotam Ottelenghi. The list of ingredients is dizzying, the fusion of cuisines baffling and the range on offer intimidating. But it's all layered expertly. The complex-sounding and delicate-looking dishes are so punchy, so satisfying, so perfect, that they left me speechless. I was a baby eating solids for the first time; I was kid eating chocolate money; I was reliving the first Double Decker I ever ate. Some dishes were so moorish that I might as well have been eating Walkers Thai Sweet Chilli Sensations. If you ever have ambitions to be obese, this is surely the way to do it. Made in Camden's food is simply addictive. My friends and I couldn't communicate. Like cavemen and women we moaned and grunted at each other, reached out to grab fistfuls of food, unable to articulate thanks or graces. I floundered and stuttered, pointlessly trying to explain to my all-to-aware guests just how good the food was. And so the random swearing started. I think it was the endive and sweet potato crumble with slow-roasted tomato salsa that did it. It started with satisfying crunch, then a wash of creamy sweet potato, then a slap of salty endive and was finished by the mouthwatering zing of the salsa. Or maybe it was the calamari, deep fried in what looked like diamonds, dunked in chilli aioli then smothered with pumpkin jam. It was alternately sweet, then spicy, then salty; soft, then springy, then crunchy. I mopped up the aioli with the squid like it was just bread and soup. Of course, it could also have been the crispy, oily hake tempura, served with a sweet and sour Kaffir lime sauce and grilled broccoli. I know it's tapas and the portions are meant to be small, but goddamnit I wanted more Hake. That's not to say the portions are stingy – the only dishes on the menu not meant to be shared (apart from the soup surely, because that's just silly) are the desserts. And those portions are by no means mean. My chocolate mousse was like a decadent sweet brick on the plate, and came with a coffee and mascarpone tart. I felt somewhat cheated by the term tart, as really it was a scoop of coffee flavoured cheese in slightly stale pastry, but oh my days the mousse was effing fantastic. In fact, my dinner at Made in Camden was a litany of expletives. I was like an excitable (slightly bearded) child with tourettes. Sadly it wasn't all for the right reasons. Given how empty the restaurant was, the service was pathetic. Unless they were hiding a rowdy and demanding party in the back room, three cocktails should not take 20 minutes to make – and if they are missing an ingredient for one, they should tell the diner immediately, not after delivering the first two. Given how few orders must have been put through the till, they shouldn't have added a glass of wine and half a wheat beer to our tab. More importantly, when we questioned this, they should have been a little more trusting of a party that has just spent £120 on dinner. But nothing could spoil the work of the chefs. To turn three educated people into dribbling wrecks, without plying them with alcohol, is no mean feat, and I for one was speechless at how wonderful the food was. When you have tasted good food, you realise it is more addictive than the additives that are meant to hook us. It's proof that psychological addiction is stronger than chemical.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 5.0

Atmosphere: 5.0

Value: 4.0

Tim O. 16 January 2011

Made In Camden was a fantastic place to have a meal and some drinks with friends. It is a relaxed venue which really suits Camden (great lighting & decor) with flavorsome food and smiley staff. It has a really interesting menu and some great beers to choose from. If you are looking for a great place to share a meal with some mates in a lively setting with a twist I would check this place out Tim

Food & Drink: 5.0

Service: 3.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 4.0

Nigel M. 14 January 2011

Had a fantastic meal at Made in Camden last week on the back of lot's of very positive online reviews. Four of us went at around 8pm. We assumed that it would be busy before the show at the Roundhouse so we went a bit later to miss the crowds (a good call!). We were warmly welcomed by the manager and found the staff very friendly and attentive throughout. The food was more than expected, a mix of lots of starters or small plates and large ones too. We mixed things up a bit and had a range of stuff. We'd recommend two to three of the small dishes (about £15?). Very very good food. Just a minor gripe… the water jugs are too big for the table and the glasses too small! Well worth going, would really recommend it!

Food & Drink: 3.0

Service: 1.0

Atmosphere: 2.0

Value: 1.0

Stefan B. 12 January 2011

Not sure if those who have reviewed this restaurant went when a show was on, but I did. Also not sure I've been to a worse restaurant! Horrible stuffy bouncer on the door that had that 'I'm in charge of the square foot of space in front of me, and take that responsibility way too seriously' jobs-worth attitude about him. Should have realised from the outside it would have been just as stuffy on the inside. Getting a table in this restaurant is an art form which needs to be learned through careful practice. When we were accosted at the door we were immediately quizzed as to what we would like to use a table for. We were four people, two of whom had eaten before coming out to the concert so wanted a drink and possibly a snack, the other two wanted to eat. This was immediately a problem and seen as an inconvenience. The availability of a table was looking dicey even though there was a vacant table for four by the door, and pointing this out to the bouncer was earning us no brownie points. Eventually we managed to get into the restaurant, and waited inside the doorway for a table (the one next to the door still vacant). The staff were dismissive at best, rude at worst. The manager (at least that is what I presumed the differently dressed member of staff was) was no different, and was badly presented (some shirts just don't work untucked!!), not at all inkeeping with the ‘stuffy’ style the venue was aiming at. He informed us that they were very busy and he would see what he could do about getting us a table (the one next to the door still vacant), and that he'd be right back. A couple of minutes passed and as we were stood near the bar, we decided we'd order a round of drinks whilst waiting for the manager to reappear. Finally he did, and had managed to find us a table (you'll never guess which one, the one by the door). We sat down and read the menu, and quickly realised that the menu was just as pretentious as the venue. There were no ‘meals’ to speak of, more a list of starters that you were meant to order a selection of, rather like when in a tapas bar. The difference however between this snazzy modern eatery and a tapas bar was the price. Most dishes were priced only a fraction under main meal prices (Pork Belly for £9.90), only you'd need three of them to constitute a ‘meal’ – as suggested by the note on the menu. However this being the style of the venue, we adhered and placed our order. Also as per the note on the menu, the food came out of the kitchen when ready not at the same time; a clause taken full advantage of when dessert was the first plate to arrive at the table. The food I have to say at this stage was nice, not outstanding but certainly some solid cooking going on back of house. It was just such a shame that the whole charade was made up to be such a pretentious dining experience, as the same pork belly dish as a proper main course at £12.95 would have been lovely. Paying the bill was an arduous experience, as finding someone to pay it to was tricky, explaining the need for the nightclub like policy on the door. Eventually we left, exhausted by the experience, a lot lighter in the wallet, and hungry. All in all a forgettable experience, one of those awful venues that would only ever survive in London. Wouldn't recommend or return.

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