Northcote Road in Battersea is well-served for chic tapas bars and kiddy-friendly cafes but try to find a pub serving decent food and it’s not that easy…until now.
The Northcote, a few minutes’ walk from Clapham Junction, has just been revamped and now offers stylish checked carpets, sink-into leather Chesterfields, whimsical portraits of admirals with custard pies adorning their bodies and signs telling you about various local bus routes. It was quiet at lunchtime on the Friday we visited but had a welcoming atmosphere nonetheless.
The menu is classic gastropub at competitive prices with starters of coarse country pate with rustic bread, smoked salmon on a herb blini, salmon and prawn fishcakes and Eggs Benedict. The star of the show was definitely a baked tart of pumpkin, goat’s cheese and onion made from wholemeal pastry with hints of orange zest. It was an autumnal triumph and at £6.50 would make a great light lunch dish.
Moving on to mains, we tucked into a salad of roasted beetroot, goat’s cheese and bitter leaves, curry of the day and pearl barley-stuffed Portobello mushrooms with poached egg. The salad and curry were both satisfying – although it was a slight surprise to find the goat’s cheese breaded – but the mushroom dish suffered from a lack of seasoning and was rather bland.
Portion control is pretty generous at The Northcote so we struggled to finish our desserts: a huge slice of baked chocolate tart, Eton mess and summer pudding with sweet cream. With starters from £4.50, mains from £7.75 and desserts from £4.50 this is a good place for reliable food in a comfortable and stylish setting.
My advice would be to choose a starter if you want a light lunch – they’re great value for money and, washed down as ours were with a bottle of good South African Chenin, you can’t go wrong. The Northcote is a welcome addition to this busy street packed with restaurants and deserves to do well.
2 Northcote Road
Tel: 020 7223 5378