The Anglesea Arms was revamped in June 2014, under new ownership and with a fresh head chef in the form of Philip Harrison, who returns here after a stint at The Malt House. This Victorian boozer was one of the very first London gastropubs, tucked away in Brackenbury Village. The bar area at the front has a real fire, and the pleasing smell of wood smoke permeates through to the dining area at the back.
The wine list had just over 50 labels, ranging from £17.50 to £59, with a median price of £30 and an average mark-up of 2.3 times retail, which is very fair by London standards. Sample wines included Omrah unoaked Chardonnay 2013 at £26 for a wine that you can find in the high street for £12, Greywacke Sauvignon Blanc 2012 at £34 compared to a shop price of £17, and Barbera d’Alba ‘Conca Tre Pile’ A. Conterno, 2011 at a fair £44 for a bottle that retails at £29.
Seafood fritters with tartare sauce (£8) were nicely cooked, the home-made sauce piquant and working well with the crisp fritters (12/20). My salad (£8) of pear, radish, mascarpone, croutons and leaves was pleasant enough, though for me the dressing could have benefitted from better quality oil (11/20).
Wood pigeon (£17) with celeriac puree, king cabbage and hedgehog mushrooms was cooked pink, though was somewhat fiddly to get off the bone. The celeriac puree had good texture, but for me the best element was the excellent reduction of cooking juices, which had plenty of flavour (13/20). Roast pumpkin, lentils, hazelnuts and black cabbage (£14) worked well together, the sweetness of the pumpkin offset by the cabbage, the vegetables carefully cooked (12/20).
Apple and rhubarb crumble (£6) was the dish of the night, the rhubarb providing plenty of acidity to offset the custard, the crumble having good texture (strong 13/20). Service was friendly, and the bill with one of the pricier bottles came to £60 a head. A typical bill per head if sharing a modest bottle of wine would be £50. Overall, the Anglesea Arms seems in good hands, the food hearty and enjoyable, the atmosphere relaxed.
Further reviews: 01st Jun 2009