There is a strange part of London, in which I used to live, in-between Shepherd’s Bush, Holland Park and Kensington. This pretty residential area has huge potential and yet there is a real shortage of nice cafes, restaurants and shops. So recently when I was alerted about Mustard, a new bistro on Shepherd’s Bush Road, I was keen to visit and try the food as soon as possible.
Mustard is housed in an old butchery building, the glorious interiors offer charming hints to its previous use, with the original tiles and features still intact. We made use of the small terrace at the front of the restaurant, and sat outside enjoying the springtime sunshine while having lunch.
The restaurant is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner and is particularly popular at the weekend with the locals, who must be delighted with this stylish new neighbourhood hang out. The menu focuses on fresh, seasonal British produce from land and sea, and there is also a great selection of vegetarian options. The Express Lunch menu is available daily, a reasonable £9.95 for two courses or £12.95 for three.
To quench our thirst we opted for a couple of glasses of the Furleigh sparkling wine from Dorset. It was a delicious, light bubbly wine with subtle fruity notes of peach and lime… refreshing and very easy to drink. Just-out-of-the-oven fennel and linseed bread arrived alongside crispy pork belly soldiers with apple dipping sauce.
In the mood for spring we chose summery dishes from the a la carte menu. The free-range half roast chicken for me, and pan-fried woodland mushrooms with braised lentils and pearled spelt for my veggie guest. The chicken was divine, with irresistible crispy skin, a faint charcoal grill smokiness and a rich dill and wheat berry gravy. I was particularly happy devouring it alongside the lusciously smooth creamed potatoes. The mushrooms were very tasty too, perfectly seasoned and cooked, with a light but filling risotto-like lentil and spelt mix.
I had just enough space, and more than enough greed, to agree to a taste of dessert. The almond and blood orange cake was dense but moist, accompanied with a dollop of sweet soft cheese. Though I liked the flavour, I found the hefty slice too big for pudding and would have preferred something a little more refined, especially considering the £5.50 pricetag.
As we sat sipping on fresh mint tea, I realised how relaxed and at ease I felt. Unlike chaotic central London venues, or tiny trendy locations in East and South London, Mustard manages to maintain a lovely low-key and local feel. So you can really relish your meal out and enjoy the company without worrying about a thing.
More information and book a table at Mustard here.