Sunday, 12 March 2017

Dinner and many many cocktails at Browns, Canary Wharf

'Tis a funny place, Canary Wharf. It's so shiny and corporate and I never have any reason to go there, but on the rare occasions I do, I do always find myself a bit in awe of the big buildings (and feeling like I'm in The Apprentice).

It's not a place I would ever think to go for dinner and yet that's where I was on Friday evening.

After getting rather lost on what should've been a seven-minute walk from the tube station, I made it to Browns by the river.

I'd never seen a Browns before I moved to Bristol for uni and for a long time I thought it was an independent restaurant. Yeah, lol. I was wrong. I believe there are about 25 branches of Browns across the UK so it's not exactly as chainy as Pizza Express, but there are a fair few.

I was looking forward to tasting some delicious things from their new menu.
My old school friend Tash and I kicked things off with cocktails and they were so fab that we drank different ones all the way through dinner. At around £7, the cocktails are really reasonably priced too (for London especially).

The place was packed and the vibe was fun.

We decided to get the sharing plate to start, and the staff kindly agreed to amend it a little for us.
Neither Tash nor I being huge pork fans, we asked if we could skip the pulled pork and pig cheek crostini and have more of everything else - 'chicken lollipops', salt and pepper squid, prawn cocktail, beetroot houmous and crostini.

It wasn't the most exciting sharing plate ever but it was perfectly nice. The bruschetta was crisp but the chicken was a bit oily for me.

On to the mains (and more cocktails)!
 Tash had the lobster risotto with parmesan, chives, courgette and lemon which she loved.
 I decided to have the beetroot and avocado salad with added feta.
Beetroot houmous, quinoa, avocado, asparagus, baby kale and feta - it was genuinely one of the best salads I've had in some time. I loved it.

It was also huge and just seemed like it wasn't going down, as much as I ate!

I absolutely loved that after I ordered my salad, our waitress asked, "Would you like some chips on the side?" Like, she literally read my mind.

That's like the law of having salad, right? You have to have chips as well? (And pudding?)
So yeah Tash and I got the truffle parmesan chunky chips and asparagus with hollandaise on the side.

The chips, were, amazing. So crisp! So fluffy! Could've done with a touch more truffle oil in my opinion and they were better once the cheese was meltier, but they were still fantastic.

And the asparagus was super too, even though I don't believe it's currently in season - not overcooked or stringy.

I did notice that there weren't loads of options for veggies on the menu, so you may want to bear that in mind if you're not a meat- or fish-eater.
For pudding we both decided to have the apple, cherry and almond crumble (and another cocktail).

It was HUGE, but I am always ok with that. It was also v hot, which is good.

Cherry and almond is always a winning combo in my book and I loved the almondy topping - Tash thought there wasn't enough topping in the crumble to fruit ratio, but I was on board with it.

I don't think the cherries were fresh, but I could be wrong - and hey, when they're in a crumble who really cares? The fresh berries on top were a random but nice touch.

All our cocktails had lovely fresh berry garnishes too which I loved. Probs got one of my five a day through sheer alcoholism.

It had been a delicious Friday evening that just happened to be in Canary Wharf.

Tash and I were guests at Browns but all opinions are my own, natch.

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