Somewhat out of the way, inoffensive yet capable, Lowlander does a rather decent representation of all things Belgian in the guise of a central London restaurant.
Happily, you don’t have to be Poirot to realise the biggest draw here. That is the beer, with an array of pumps and bottles offering a huge selection from the Low Countries, ranging from light fruit beers that your Gran would like to bolshie triples that might get the better of an beer-bellied Uncle or over-ambitious twenty-something.
Along with that range, which can be explored in pints or in tasting trays, there is also a decent selection of very earthy, very Belgian snacks with which, at least, to space out the beer-drinking.
And though simple, the food here is far from an after-thought. An Eggs Benedict starter was perfect with a Hollandaise just the right side of tart (something so many others get wrong). Mains, including national staples like mussels and steak and chips, were proud and potent. That steak for example was a good medium-rare, with perfect crispy, post-hangover fries and a piquant mushroom and red wine sauce.
A Wild Boar burger was a real beast, full of chunky, charred flavour and with tangy, truly complementary apple chutney. Vegetarian options are a little thin but a tagliatelle bursting with roasted veg and goat’s cheese is one of a handful of decent options.
A chocolate brownie dessert was a little heavy and, unfortunately, perhaps not the best showcase of the country’s other famous love, yet there were surprisingly few false notes overall.
In a simple, wood-hewn space light floods in under huge open windows, giving the place an open, almost outdoors feel. Waiters buzz round with great zeal so that the overall effect is quite charming and, while Lowlander might not have Italian strut, French finery or American oomph, it certainly does straight-backed Belgian brilliantly.