Wednesday, 17 June 2009

Gallery Mess Café & Bar

Summer holidays are long and tedious. Brought daughter along to Satch's for a bit of cultural fix, she loved it!

Blackcurrant & hibiscus and green teas.

The Great British Breakfast
They got it almost right this morning but they forgot the butter and when it finally turned up, it was frozen solid :(

The egg was perfect this time.
Expensive but a good breakfast anyhow.
The service at the Mess I must applaud is brilliant!

Stare at the four dots in the middle for thirty seconds, then shut your eyes and tilt your head back slightly.
Greetings SoG.

Early Sunday Morning
Shiny but breezy

Wow Wow Jing Assam Breakfast Tea

The Great British Breakfast
Dry cured Ramsay of Carluke bacon, organic Cumberland sausage ring, Peter Gott black pudding, grilled cherry vine tomatoes, Portobello mushroom, a poached organic hen's egg & baked beans
This was the first offering, two flawed points;
the poached egg was overcooked and toast, where art thou?

The Replacement

The egg was still wrongly cooked, the toast felt left out and I'd given up nagging.
The overall breakfast was actually very good, especially the black pudding and sausage were absolutely delightful. A full fry-up is ideal for Sunday mornings.

Spooky exhibit of Old Persons Home


One of the best art gallery cafes in London
I would like to thank Charles Saatchi for allowing plebs like me to use the loo at his gallery without the need of the 20p coin that has gone AWOL. Actually best be serious, I don’t yet suffer from a weak bladder but I’m inordinately partial to a bit of decent art. Modern Art that is. Mr Nigella Lawson have done us all proud by endorsing free admissions to his relocated gallery at the newly developed Duke of York's Headquarters off King’s Road. Everything about the place suggests a completion of both design and conceptual correctness. This is also a place that’s perfect for the longest lunch-break skives I’ve ever had the pleasure of…abusing in the first place*. King’s Road irritates me, it epitomises pretentiousness like there’s no tomorrow and of course there’s the post-Sloanie malaise that’s permanently imbued within this part of London to be considered. How horrid! Thank goodness for the Saatchi Gallery, I can now go to King’s Road without making passé excuses like I might fall over a broken pearl necklace.

To put things mildly, I was knocked for six when I learnt that photography was allowed. I went gaga with white balance panic; there I was an atheist looking up to the sky, sad but gleefully elated. So here we go with some of the snapshots courtesy of Mr Saatchi (I’m baffled as to why he’s not knighted) and a loan camera that was in desperate need of new battery juice.

Oxfam board meeting?

This reeks!

This reminds me of Saint-Exupéry’s The Little Prince


By now the time was approaching 2pm, tummy rumbles. As confessions go, the original intention for this SW3 trip was the Gallery Mess Café & Bar (thank you London Eating). I totally advocate bright dining spaces and the kiting out of well thought out designer furniture. This place ticks both the boxes.

As an added bonus, the al fresco facility is godsend for champagne drinking show-offs and human chimneys alike (don’t look at me!).

Although the place is a barely a month old, the long and narrow room was well populated with diners that were unsurprisingly of the well-to-do caste. The Aussie gal who waited on my table was jolly and caring. Oh I love Aussies, they’re so black and white.

Who says London is a large city anyway? Out of 7.5 million people in the London, I met an old mate Jase (yes he’s from Essex and that’s what he calls himself) at the café. Jase, despite budget constraints, reluctantly became my lunch companion. As a rule I only shell out for female dining companions and no matter how hard one tries, that rule will never be broken, not even for Jase. I’m ‘ard that way.

Classic burger
Organic beefburger with vine tomato and crisp cos, served on a bun with caramelised onion and chunky chips. I didn’t bother much with perusing the Conranesque menu, the burger and chips are a good test for upmarket cafés like here.

This was a decent burger. Although I asked for it to be cooked medium it turned up well done (always the case whenever I order one, anywhere!). I’m more or less immune to this by now, next time I might put in a request for rare instead in order to attain a perfect medium patty. The burger tasted beefy and herby but seasoned with too much black pepper. Not one for the kids or wimps. The bun was excellent. As for the chips, well once you’ve tasted Heston’s best, this was perfunctory in comparison. Dig the Kilner jar housing the ketchup.

Jase’s mains and pudding of rhubarb and strawberry crumble
With rose petal ice cream.

‘Bloody hell, is that all?’, he remarked at me.
I answered with a question, ‘Is it good?’
‘It’s alright but it’s still small though!’ I took that upon as a worthy thumbs-up.

The gotta have order of Knickerbockerglory (sic)
With crème brûlée, berries, ice cream and shortbread biscuit.

This pudding evokes childhood memories; the Knickerbocker Glory was the end of term prize for the best record in a series of French spelling tests. Expensive but magnanimously divine. Might as well make
Gallery Mess Café & Bar a destination place for this dish alone. For those who feel utterly miserable and old, this pud will undoubtedly put the young back in your heart.

Jase’s ‘fit for the Queen’ teabag conclusion.
We both agreed the brew was seriously good.

My cappuccino.

The Gallery Mess Café & Bar is simply adorable. Art followed by food or vice versa, what more Sybil, what more. More visits pending. Highly recommended.

*My business partner Pete is the most tolerant of all work colleagues, he puts in more hours than I do. He’s my kind of hero. Thanks Pete.

Saatchi Gallery

Duke of York's HQ

King's Road

London SW3 4SQ


meemalee said...

Oh. My. God. I. Need. That. Knickerbockerglory. Now.

Boo said...

The burger looks good, shame it was overcooked, brilliant that it was so peppery though. OMFG - knickerbocker glory, worth a visit for this alone!

bellaphon said...

meemalee et Boo- with this pudding we shall sing to the hymn: "Jerusalem".

NB To Beattie who DMd direct- 'I overstepped the mark with the Sloanes and pearls': as for an apology, let me ponder about it...

thora said...

Enjoyable post.