The annoying thing about the so called Gastropub is that they so often disappoint. Too many ailing establishments slap on a lick of neutral paint, unenthusiastically overhaul the menu and buy in a job lot of mismatched furnishings. Fortunately the Jam Tree is a more imaginative conception than most. The main bar area is a comfortable and airy space with an eclectic mix of style and functionality, whilst quirky features like the copper topped bar, Bunsen burner beer taps and a large Worholesque Jam Tree screen print make the place feel friendly and relaxing without trying too hard.
The menu, said to ‘celebrate British food alongside colonial favourites’, offers a concise list of modernised classics and more interesting far flung flavours. Expect starters like pressed crispy belly of pork with an aubergine Sam Bal or Hot Potted Smoked Haddock with granary toast. Decadent Seared Scallops with pea and potato croquettes, samphire & wild garlic cream or Nasi goreng with gadu gadu topped with peanut sauce might be among the mains. An over zealous use of julienned cucumber on every dish was an overwrought summery garnish but luckily, the actual food came up trumps. The Chocolate Torte was bang on and a generous cheese plate finished what was a homely and filling supper that is an affordable weekday treat.
Booze-wise the Jam Tree stocks a sensible range of lagers and a few top draw ales like Green King IPA. The wine list, put together by Tim Kitchener-Smith, buyer for Hush in Mayfair, is well priced and offers lots of by-the-glass options that helps to keep the price tag down. It is fair to say that the Jam Tree is more of a foody pub than a drinky one, but on a warm evening the street-side tables are were rammed with folk enjoying a casual slurp, so if you’re in the area be sure to swing by and check it out.
Cuisine type: Modern British & colonial
Dinner for two (excluding drinks): £50
The Jam Tree
58 Milson Road
London, W14 0LB