November restaurant reviews
We head for brunch at The Anglers and try out the newly refurbed Kings Arms
The Kings Arms, Hampton Court
The Kings Arms has rather a history, dating back to at least 1709 and standing guard to Hampton Court Palace, close to its famous maze. It has recently had a refurb; and the menu given a makeover: Mark Kempson, from Michelin-starred, Kitchen W8, has been brought in to oversee the menu, with Jack Scoines as head chef. The restaurant, The Six (pictured), named after Henry VIII’s rather unfortunate wives, has been given a contemporary new look and the menu features a selection of dishes with some ingredients from the palace itself. I tried the starter of palace garden salad, with comice pear, stilton, and rye crumb, a simple but well put together dish. I also enjoyed crispy spiced whitebait – a pub menu staple, enlivened with pickled cucumber and a dill sauce, and, sticking with the fishy theme, I opted for cod with bacon, scorched gem, and garlic buttermilk to follow – a deliciously creamy and perfectly seasoned combination. A baked vanilla and hazelnut cheesecake, confit orange, damsons, and plum sorbet was a perfect finish to an excellent meal. It was a blustery mid-week evening on our visit so it was quiet, but given its prime location, and food as good as this, it is sure to do well. kingsarmshamptoncourt.com
The Anglers, Teddington
With its prime riverside location, The Anglers has always been a popular haunt, particularly in the summer months when walkers, families and locals flock to the vast beer garden. It shut briefly for a refurb earlier this year, reopened to great fanfare, and has been packed all summer, so much so that some guests found it just too busy at peak times. With autumn here though, it comes into its own in a different way, with its cosy interiors featuring welcoming fireplaces and we camped right next to the fire for a leisurely brunch in the front snug, which is full of memorabilia celebrating its past neighbour, the much-loved Teddington Film Studios. On the menu, there’s a nice selection of all the favourites – American pancakes, a full English, eggs Florentine, plus a few more unusual ones such as a falafel breakfast salad, and there is an emphasis on provenance with the likes of Fuller’s London Porter smoked salmon and Mrs Owton’s bacon. We tried the modish avocado on toast – served here with chilli oil and a poached egg, and chorizo hash with a fried egg. Both were delicious with the chorizo hash a flavourful pan of fried cubed potatoes with spicy chorizo. And the soft poached eggs on the avocado were perfectly done. Coffees were excellent and we could have easily passed the rest of the morning chilling by the fire. If you’re of the school of thought (and I most certainly am) that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, then this is the place to be.
Breakfast served daily 9am to 11.30am.