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The latest venture from independent bar group Darwin & Wallace has an open, naturally lit, stripped-back feel – in keeping with the building’s fire station history. Emergency call-outs have been replaced by relaxed all-day eating and drinking, helped by a colour scheme of soft pinks, chalky whites and pale greys, plus seasonal British cooking. The menu ranges from small and sharing dishes – pig’s cheek and black pudding croquettes, perhaps, or crispy peppered squid – through to more substantial main courses. We enjoyed delicately spiced ginger chicken cakes coated in a light golden crumb with zingy lime coriander mayo, and mini sausages smothered in a sticky-sweet honey and mustard glaze. Next, an accurately cooked sea bass (soft flesh, crisp skin) arrived with baby artichoke, buttery new potatoes, asparagus and a crème fraîche tartare sauce; chicken Kiev was satisfyingly crunchy, the tender meat stuffed with garlic butter. Pudding of bitter dark chocolate tart was accompanied by a fluffy mousse and a nostalgic slice of chocolatey Rice Krispies cake. To drink, the selection of classic cocktails is boosted by various spirit infusions, house-made syrups and sherbets. Rounded off by an attractive courtyard space, this elegant venue makes a welcome addition to leafy Chiswick.
I’ve lived in London for over 30 years and realise I will never know everything (or even close to) about this amazing and vast city I’ve made my home. But it’s good to try, to explore new areas and learn their history – everywhere has its story after all. So today we’re heading West to Chiswick.As the postcode (W4) expresses, Chiswick is a district of West London.
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