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Restaurant review

The Laughing Gravy


We're still not sold on the vaguely unappetising name (it's also the name of a Laurel and Hardy short to make things even more confusing) but there's not a lot else negative we can say about this great little restaurant.

Enviably situated a stone's throw, or rather, a ten minute walk from the hubbub of the Southbank and London at it's most central, it's nevertheless a surprisingly laid-back pocket of the city given busy Waterloo station is also nearby.

This ethos is reflected inside: on the menu, which is competitively priced and features quite a few conventional British-leaning favorites with surprising twists, but also in the relaxed, cheerful service and pub-like touches here and there. (Bookshelves that punters are encouraged to donate too etc.)

Because of its modest size but not too rammed table layout it's quite an intimate place, the kind you'll want to hang around at after you've eaten for coffee and the like until an obscene time. However the kooky and cool but not pretentious decor and gorgeous lighting make it equally fitting for a more formal affair, albeit perfect for arty left-of-the-centre types.

Most importantly the food was great, although the portion sizes were ever so slightly disappointing. The Highland oat-rolled Staffordshire Innes goat's cheese served with a radish and hazelnut salad was a light and summery start but even though it was just a starter there simply wasn't enough of it to satisfy.

Meanwhile for our mains we enjoyed the lamb rump, which with its soft consistency and impeccable quality was hands down the best lamb we've had all year, perfectly tender and expertly cooked. And yet it's its accompaniment that's been swarming around in our heads since visiting - rosemary and garlic potatoes on crushed truffle minted broad beans and peas; a neater and daintier affair than it sounds.

Overall the course succeeded because if was of impeccable quality and presented artfully and precisely (as with all the courses) - meaning it comes off resembling the better looking cousin of your grandmother's famous roast dinner.

The evening's highlight, and reflecting the menu's understated and eccentric individualism while simultaneously reminding one of home cooking was the honey and vanilla roasted peach and almond crumble curiously served and cutely presented with salted caramel ice cream, which was heavenly.

Full marks to our charming, incessantly chipper Irish waitress who was probably the highlight of the experience and was poised and ready upon request to talk us through parts of the menu.

A lovely evening.

4/5

154 Blackfriars Road,
London,
SE1 8EN

thelaughinggravy.co.uk

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