For as much as I want to keep Chiswick an untouched and unpopular place (because it is my omgfave!!!), the time has come for me to have a love-fest over Sam’s Brasserie and Bar. Just off Chiswick High Road, Sam’s is located in the Barley Mow Centre and – as the name infers – keeps a 100-seat redbricked brasserie and 55-seat bar tucked far enough away from the high street to give it cult appeal. With the addition of high ceilings and steel girders, it also has beautifully eclectic visual draw.
The atmosphere at Sam’s is equal parts professional, friendly, and absent of pretention. We scrutinized the menu (which changes daily) while knocking back an interesting blend of warm and cool seasonal cocktails, settling on a Colston bassett stilton, beetroot, walnut and pomegranate salad with maple dressing as well as Lambs belly fritters with pumpkin puree and salsa verde. While the salad was well-balanced and exquisitely sparked with maple sweetness, the fritters lacked a strong enough flavour to encourage me to finish the plate.
Thankfully, the mains blew us away. First, chargrilled lake district venison, fondant potato, spiced red cabbage, and chesnut puree. A succulent and tender dish that I managed to steal more than a few forks of. Thankfully we had the foresight to order the spiced red cabbage as a side; the buttery zest of this dish deserves an award of its own. Tucking into – my own dish of – roast partridge, orange & thyme, bacon, cavolo nero, and soft parmesan, I found yet another dish that makes your stomach jump out of your body and run around screaming like a child on Christmas morning. Cavolo nero grips onto thyme even more so than kale and makes for an excellent pairing.
Knowing that it can be quite the finicky dish to execute, I ordered the treacle tart and mulled wine ice cream while my dining partner indulged in a gargantuan sticky toffee pudding with salted carmel ice cream. Praise is due for the wafer-thin crust of the former and the stodge deficit of the latter. Fuss-free and fabulous.
I would happily eat (and drink) here any day of the week; for its dulcet environment, menu…and for the love of Chiswick.