Two of my life’s big passions are food and football. However, whereas the foodie world is aligning itself with the credit crunch by becoming increasingly accessible and affordable, football continues to go the other way. Greed, bling, arrogance and general excess have become just as much a part of the sport as the ‘beautiful game’ itself. As a Spurs supporter, you can throw a large dollop of disappointment into that mix too! So what happens when the two world’s meet? Actually, the result is unexpectedly down to earth and really quite good.
The Club Bar & Dining is an informal bar and dining room in Soho owned by Crystal Palace chairman Simon Jordan. The brasserie style venue is relaxed and mercifully bling free, with exposed brick walls, block wood tables and banquette seating. The open kitchen is also a major feature, whilst the long bar takes its place along the back wall of the dining room. Drinks include a concise and well priced international wine list, with bottles starting at £12. We decided to work our way through their extensive cocktail list which, whilst generally good, were a little heavy-handed in composition.
Like the rest of the restaurant, the menu keeps things simple, with the focus on fresh, high quality ingredients. Starters were Roasted chorizo with poached free range egg & baby spinach and Crispy duck salad with roasted peppers, french beans & barbeque sauce; both were well constructed and full of promised flavours, but at around £9 each, a little too pricey. For my mains I went for a light and tasty Corn fed chicken with savoy cabbage & chicken & tarragon tortelloni whilst Potato Princess went for a hearty dish of Braised Angus beef shoulder with creamed parsnip, potatoes & a rich port sauce. Again, both were well cooked and allowed the quality of the ingredients to shine through; at around £16 for good sized portions, they represented decent value too. Highlight of the desserts was the baked Baileys cheesecake with a Dime bar base which was rich, not too sweet and totally moorish.
At the end of the day, like Simon’s football club, The Club wasn’t quite Premier League, but delivered an entirely enjoyable experience and one which I would happily return to for some good honest food and drinks.
Cuisine type: Modern Euro
Meal for 2 (excluding drinks): £60
The Club Bar & Dining
21 Warwick Street
London W1B 5NF
Tel: 020 7734 1002