The Harwood Arms 333

Walham Grove , London, SW6 1QP

020 7386 1847

Visit The Harwood Arms

30 reviews

49 Gastropub Fulham

Harwood Arms

SquareMeal Review of The Harwood Arms

‘Not your average gastropub’ says the tagline, and for once the hype is fully justified. This Fulham boozer has been a pack leader for many years, staking its claim with urbane ingredients-led cooking and handsome gentrified interiors (bare-boarded floors, chunky wood furniture, mirrors and monochrome photos on pastel walls), all overseen by starry backers (it’s co-owned by Brett Graham of The Ledbury). The Harwood Arms kitchen specialises in remarkably seasonal British victuals – including bags of furred and feathered game (roast Berkshire deer with baked carrot, pickled walnuts and juniper, for example). Other highlights from the daily fixed-price menu might range from the famous crab muffins or new season’s beetroots with smoked eel, pumpernickel and purple rocket to calendar-tuned desserts such as blackberry and bay-leaf trifle with brown sugar meringues or cherries with vanilla cream and a brandy snap. It may tout a Michelin star, but The Harwood Arms still trades as a dyed-in-the-wool watering hole, serving pints of real ale, venison Scotch eggs and cauliflower croquettes to the drinkers, and making a big splash with its sell-out Sunday roasts – although the serious wine list is several notches above the pub norm.   

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Nearby Tube/Rail Stations

Fulham Broadway Station 200m

Fulham Broadway Tube Station 332m

Address

Address: Walham Grove , London SW6 1QP

Area: Fulham

Opening times

Tues-Sun 12N-3pm (Sun -4pm) Mon-Sat 6.30-9.30pm Sun 7-9pm

Nearby Landmarks

Dance Attic 191m

Vue Cinema Fulham Broadway 286m

Details

Telephone: 020 7386 1847

Website:

Cuisine: Gastropub

7.4

Food & Drink: 8.1

Service: 7.1

Atmosphere: 7.2

Value: 7.2

Food & Drink: 5.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 4.0

Continental Diner platinum reviewer 27 November 2013

The Harwood Arms embodies what is great about “pub fine dining”, as this is way beyond a “gastro pub” in everything but the premises. Not that they are a put-off, but do not expect fine dining enclosure tucked away at the rear of the pub. What you see is what you get and it is a newly refurbished and pleasant rather small pub. The only nod is an elaborate skylight which transforms the space. The focus on the food is what makes this place special. The moment you try one of their house special scotch eggs as a pre-starter you will see what I mean. The finesse and quality is refutable and very enjoyable. It is very much British modern cooking not too different from what Mr Atherton would advocate. One criticism is the wine list which is a bit confusing and lacks a dash of “direction and purpose”, however, the beers are well chosen and combine well with the haute-cuisine-cum-comfort-food style of the cooking. Thumbs up for keeping it very authentic and producing a perfect example of where the British culinary revolution stands today. A great place to take out-of-town visitors too.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 4.0

BoatLady platinum reviewer 24 October 2013

My friend wanted to meet for a casual lunch near Fulham Broadway and recommended we meet at The Harwood Arms. Lunch in a pub with a Michelin star? This is my kind of “casual”. The pub itself is very unstarry: generic wooden tables, generic Farrow & Ball elephant's breath-painted wooden panelling, generic prints on the walls. I like that it hasn't gone all posh pub paying lip service to casual but then stuffing the place with linen tablecloths and “art”. Service is appropriately relaxed with patient, friendly, smartly casual attired waiters; no retro pinnies here. In fact it is quite difficult to tell the waiters from the punters and at one point we ask one poor gentleman for a coffee before he sits down with his friends at the next door table. Embarrassing. There's a tempting, good value set menu on offer with a venison starter and pork main for £20 which I would have jumped at if it weren't for the fact we have been eating our way through half a pig in our freezer (don't ask) and the thought of more pork makes me feel ill. So instead we went a la carte and had a fantastic meal of which the outstanding memory for me was an unusual salmon starter: thickish slices of smoked fish, still gelatinously transparent, a beautiful brown-orange, with a wonderful treacle-y flavour. On the plate everything looks more Michelin-worthy: portions aren't huge (but I didn't think they were disappointing and I was certainly full at the end of 2 courses) and there are the usual swirls of sauces and garnishes on the side, although, like the decor, nothing is showy. The bill comes at £45, which given we stuck drinkswise to elderflower cordial and coffee, is slightly starry for lunch but money well spent. I can't think of any other places in London where you can enjoy Michelin starred food in such an unpretentious venue.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 4.0

London Gourmet platinum reviewer 09 September 2013

Rightfully so this place deserves his michelin star, as the first and only in London. Given its a pub (which can easily get forgotten given the renowned quality of its food) and the food is great, you end up with a fantastic combination – a very relaxed and easy (ie not posh) place to enjoy some high quality food (and wine). The place has a simple, rustic charme (wooden chairs and tables) with very friendly and attentive staff. The menu is short and that's good as it offers fresh and seasonal food with a focus on local british sourced produce (game etc). The wine list reminds you what this place is as it contains an impressive offering of high quality wine matching its michelin star food offering.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 4.0

Richard E. platinum reviewer 24 May 2012

If a meal is eaten in a restaurant and nobody tweets a picture of it, did it have any taste?  I don't know what the fascination with taking pictures of food comes from and, whilst the shoulder of deer at the Harwood was a delight to behold, I'm afraid I just don't get why, when it arrived at the next door table, everyone got out their cameras and iPhones to take pictures of it. I know some restaurants ban photographs (after all, the food porn shots taken for a restaurant's website take an age to line up and a fortune to get right, so who wants a badly lit snap going viral?), but you shouldn't have to.  What makes people think that an evening of eating, drinking and good conversation can be made even better by taking pictures of the food?  Sure, capture the fun by taking pictures of each other (I find that this often helps fill in gaps in the evening), but the food? Some septic friends of ours were in town, and wanted a gastropub experience. In fact, it seems that most of our fellow diners were from across the Pond.  The Harwood is a pub. It serves beer and scotch eggs (more of which later). It also has a Michelin star. On balance, I think that this is a good thing; Michelin moving with the times, and the tastes, where gastropubs are doing what inns of old used to do, by serving good quality food with which to accompany an ale or two. Ok, so the wine list is good here too, but the idea of a less formal setting than a restaurant to get great nosh is one innovation going the other way across to the US. The Harwood is a real pub too; along with the diners there are the drinkers, equally as welcome.  It is stuck on a back road off Fulham Broadway, around the corner from the home of the worst team to win the Champions League since Porto.  So cheap it is not. We started with some of those scotch eggs. A scotch egg used to be a slab of sausage meat wrapped around a solid hen's egg coated in orange breadcrumbs, served straight from the fridge. Now you find them on every trendy menu. Here it is served warm, with venison replacing pork, and the egg soft and giving.  The soup and terrine both went down well too. The former a lovely concoction of jersey royals and wild garlic, the latter a good country pate, with toasted brioche. Continuing the deer theme, three of us moved on to the shoulder of venison. Wrapped in bacon, served with a huge dollop of mash, much photographed by the next table, was gorgeous. Slow cooked, melting and beautifully seasoned.  It tasted as good as it looked, although, unlike the neighbouring table, we still didn't take a picture of it.  The cod favoured by the fourth of our party, whilst not as photogenic as Bambi, went down well too. Wines too were nice: a cheeky Voortrekker chenin blanc followed by a solid old world red. Not cheap, but both excellent. Service is cheery and efficient. In fact relaxed and pub like, rather than restaurant stiff. At this point I must confess that our dining companions did show us a picture of a dish they'd had in NY the week before. (I did say that they were American).  It was glorious: a whole sheep's head, smote in two, tongue, brains, everything ready to be picked over. I'm not ready to take pictures (let alone tweet anything) yet, but when I'm next in the Big Apple, I'm going to find a sheep's head to tuck into.

Food & Drink: 2.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 2.0

Jim M. 16 January 2012

Having been recommended the Harwood Arms as a great Gastro Pub, and especially given the Michelin Star rating it has, we were expecting something a little better than what we actually experienced. The pub itself is nice, and possesses a warm and friendly atmosphere with a small bar which had a welcoming, relaxed ambience. The service in particular was the highlight of our visit, with attentive and friendly serving girls ensuring we were always happy, delivering our food and drinks promptly and efficiently. However the food itself was a huge disappointment. Whilst we expected a degree of overpricing given the nature of the establishment, the food itself was well presented (with colourful sauce swirls and artful presentation) but generally disappointing in substance (bar the “home-made” bread of course). A smoked salmon starter -given it's constituents it would have to be spectacular to be priced that way…it wasn't. Roast Chicken leg with pressed potato and black pudding, whilst moist, was incredibly average and meagre in portion size, a hugely inflated meal at almost £18. The other meals were essentially the same – acceptable, pleasant but woefully overpriced and miles away from a Michelin starred expectations. If the portions had been of a normal size, or the prices lowered and the Michelin starred reputation set to one side in favour of it being a nice pub perhaps that would mark a higher score, but for us the Harwood Arms marked a somewhat disappointing foray into the realm of Gastro Pubs. We came away thinking of all the better places we'd eaten at, which without such pedigree managed to serve better food at the same or lower price. However it must be said again that whilst the food and value for money were poor to average, the service was excellent and the serving girls deserve all the praise from any positive reviews. Go there for a drink…skip the meal.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 3.0

London Eater silver reviewer 15 October 2011

Being a Michelin star restaurant, I was expecting to be wowed by the Harwood Arms and left thinking i'd had a standard pub roast… the rib of beef was slightly disappointing: the meat was tough, the smoked bone marrow had no flavour as it was deep fried and it came with standard dinner knives and not steak knives making it difficult to carve the meat from the bone. However the thing that makes this place special is the fantastic service, knowledgeable staff and the presentation of the food. I probably wouldn't go again but the long Sunday lunch we had was enjoyable enough.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 4.0

Fiona M. 25 July 2011

Since I moved to Fulham about 6 years ago this place has gone through several different iterations, with varying degrees of success. The Harwood Arms, when I first visited in 2006, was a better than average local serving decent and very reasonably priced English pub-grub that verged on ‘gastro-pub’ but didn’t quite make it and didn’t actually need to. Then it was sold and the new owner tried to be different, introduced a fiddly and rather unappetising menu and alienated most of the regulars. The next (and final) change of ownership saw the place taken over by the Brett Graham of the Ledbury restaurant, Mike Robinson of the Pot Kiln pub in Berkshire and Edwin Vaux from the Vaux brewery. We didn’t know, but dropped in there when our planned lunch venue was packed out with exhibition visitors (the perils of living near Earls Court). Wow, what a surprise! I seem to remember feasting on razor fish, venison and foraged wild sorrel. And the place was all poshed up with linen napkins and little hessian sacks of foodie bread. If I remember the bill was ridiculously cheap, less than we would have paid at the Atlas, and the place was half empty. What we didn’t know was the heritage of the new owners. I took a foodie friend there, who interrogated front of house staff as we ate our way through yet another fabulous meal. And we promised ourselves more visits! But, here’s the rub. The Harwood Arms got rave reviews and was awarded a Michelin star, I think within a year or so of its reincarnation. And, when we went back, it was full to bursting, even on a weekday lunchtime and front of house staff were simply ungracious. The prices went up and the service went down. We sat through one lunch of ‘foodie’ but greasy bar snacks because ‘the kitchen was catering for a large party’ and the subsequent two visits we walked out before being served. So, a year on, I decided to try once more. The Harwood Arms format is pretty much unchanged. The flowers on the table are cultivated, not wild but the ‘country comes to the city’ look and feel is still there. The menu is still very much in the same style. The little hessian sacks of foodie bread are still there. But, on Tuesday lunchtime the place was very, very quiet. My friend is something of a wine buff and ordered a bottle of 2010 Isabel Estate Sauvignon Blanc. Yum! He happily told me that the vineyard was next door to Cloudy Bay and that for a while, they had sold their surplus grapes next door, until someone realised the quality of the stuff they were producing themselves. It was fabulous and a great match for my starter of crab, apple and peas with raw fennel. It was a truly pretty dish, with a light apple mousse, pea shoots, crab roe on toast and a perfectly dressed crab salad. My companion chose the faggots of wild rabbit with prunes. Now, that sounds like a hard number to make look nice! But it arrived in a pretty white bowl looking almost like something you might get from an upmarket Chinese. We swapped tastes – and it turned out to be a very light rabbit mixture with just a hint of prunes. More wine, Luigi Bosca, a full bodied 2008 Argentinian Malbec to go with our main courses. The special of the day was a roe deer platter and, I was keen to see if it was as fine as it had been when we first went to the Harwood Arms . I wasn’t at all disappointed with the plate of sausage, chops and rissoles accompanied by roasted new potatoes. There were no complaints from the other side of the table either, my friend was very happy with an elegant but generous plate of lamb with roasted fennel. It’s tribute to the food that we went on to eat puddings, something I try to avoid at lunchtimes. But they were pretty fabulous too. For me a lovely coffee and nut ice cream with nutty praline thins, it was really light and a perfect end to the meal for me. The cherry fool was richer, but there were absolutely no complaints! I’m VERY pleased to say our service was impeccable and the French lady who looked after us was both charming and knowledgeable, helping with the extensive wine list and explaining that the original Harwood Arms chef, Stephen Williams had left, but his replacement, Barry Fitzgerald, had been the sous chef working under him. That explains the heritage and style, there are changes (at least this time, less foraged and wild food) but they are subtle and I am guessing will provide a more consistent experience. Hopefully the Harwood Arms has cut its teeth now and we can look forward to more superb meals in this ‘country brought to town’ pub.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 4.0

essar g. 22 June 2011

Doesnt get much better than this. Lovely beer, good wine list. Started with the scotch egg and a plate of asparagus, followed on with poached cod and a lamb dish. finished up with sticky toffee pudding and rhubarb doughnuts. you'd be splitting hairs to fault any of it, and all at pub prices (albeit top end pub prices). Service very attentive. Spot on.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 3.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 4.0

Wren 20 June 2011

Dined at the Harwood a few times, the food is amazing, leaves me wanting more every time, I especially enjoy the Roe Deer steak and their venison scotch egg is to die for. Shame they don't have a garden, makes this not an ideal summer venue, the restaurant area is quite stuffy, but lovely and cosy in winter. The waiting staff are ok, sometimes a bit cold. It is really difficult to get a table at weekends so do book well in advance. I always book on the phone and miraculously I always get a response first time (quite unusual for busy restaurants and one of my pet hates). The prices are ok, the drinks are quite pricey and really, I would eat there a lot more often if it was a touch cheaper. They have a daily specials menu but they are not actually cheaper than the usual menu and aren't generally that different from the usual menu. A real shame, would deffo eat there more frequently if there were cheaper lunch options at least.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 3.0

David J. gold reviewer 02 June 2011

It’s Friday evening and I haven’t booked. My date Alicia is tugging at my sleeve in complaint, making her irritation known. The Fulham restaurants of stature are glowing with busy diners and those I wouldn’t be seen dead in are not worth my consideration; however at this rate Chicken Go Go may be our evening setting? We walk towards the Broadway and Alicia suggests we try the Harwood Arms. “Without a reservation?” I reply. “Harwood Arms in Fulham? With the Michelin star? Who serve the venison Scotch egg?” So, with no other plan we threw caution to the wind and turned into the quiet suburban road where the famed gastrobub sits (depressingly coloured) and entered, praying for a tray and seat in the toilets at the most. As expected, the sparsely decorated room (“painted pale Farrow & Ball shades” said Giles Coren) was full of romantic couples, with upscale French families and the odd pick of neighbourhood natives, no doubt surprised to find their local wrapped in euphoria and out-of-towners since January walking on their patch, sitting on their stalls and drinking their ales. The Michelin-starred gastrobub is one of a kind in London. It was a new entry for the prestigious award in 2010 along with The Pipe & Glass Inn in Beverley, Yorkshire and Michael Parkinson’s The Royal Oak in Paley Street, Berkshire. The food is good rural pub grub, served cleanly and simply. My deer and walnut terrine (£6.50) was served with a salad of chicory and pickled prunes and warm crunchy toast. Presented on a tree trunk – okay, modernist wooden plate – it was a decent size for a starter. The terrine was powerful in flavour and soft to cut but there was a clear outweigh between pâté and toast, as there always is, it must be impossible to achieve – there is never enough bread, pita, chapatti, naan, damper or bagel to accompany and spread-on or mop up with. Air-dried Cumbrian ham (£4.50) from the Bar Menu was again served on a tree trunk (a littler flatter and lighter wood this time) and there was plenty of it for two people. The thin slices had a fraction of smokiness and importantly, weren’t over-salted. There were a few pathetic lettuce leaves nipped and thrown on top that appeared pointless and added nothing, but some hearty apple slices were a nice sweet addition. On a separate blackboard from the Bar Menu was written “Pigeon legs £3”. So what the heck, we ordered some of them as Alicia had never tried them before. I’m not even sure I have? Pigeon breast certainly, but their scraggy little legs…? They arrived snapped and caramelised on a small white plate. Easy to pick up and finger but bony little buggers, and not much meat. Still, what they did carry was good and a well-priced delicacy at £3.00. A lovely blonde waitress named Sophie reintroduced the wine list after we decided that we did need something to wash this feast down with, and we ordered a bottle of Albariño at £29.00. It’s expensive but one of the cheapest in their wine list and it’s one of the freshest whites I’ve had, with notes of soft peaches, and I believe a much nicer choice over Chardonnay. It was Sophie’s birthday on our visit and she found an Aussie sister in Alicia and they hit it off. Fine for me, while they nattered about yearning for home luxuries (Vegemite and Tim Tams), I covertly finished the last few pigeon legs. Everyone’s a winner… except the pigeon. And so to the Scotch egg. The venison Scotch egg to be precise, priced at £2.50. I’ll be writing more about this (and others) at a later date, but to continue with the review of this celebrated one. I’d asked Jay Rayner where he thought the best Scotch egg in London could be found, “Harwood Arms,” he replied, “no contest”. This is how I had known about the accolade when Alicia suggested the Harwood Arms. She suggests a pub and all I’m aware of is that they produce a spankingly ace Scotch egg! The first thing you notice is that it’s deep-fried and crispy and has a sprinkling of Maldon salt on top. It sits proud and spherical on a square of grease-proof paper, just wooing me to sink in and release its runny yolk. ‘Egging’ me on, if you will. The breadcrumbs are warm and light and the venison meat holds perfectly the inner-casing of comfy white and fluent yellow yolk. Surprisingly, it isn’t overcooked and the centre is not a rubbery texture of gooey compound. Like a Dime bar it’s ‘smooth on the inside, crunchy on the out’. There’s a warming crunch before the meat and then you’re layered into the egg. For a product which appears almost inconspicuous on the Bar Menu it’s a real gem and the Harwood Arms have rightly become famous for such a thing.