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Hereford Road On Hereford Road

Finally, a long waited restaurant post! I really should do this more often as I surely dine out QUITE A LOT, and there are so many places I mean to check out! Now put my guilty feelings aside, this is a true local gem if you ever find yourself around Notting Hill and feeling peckish.

Hereford Road is a modest place. Simple and sleek, white metro-tiled background with leather seatings, no background music at all but just some gentle chatter and the rustling sound of knives and forks. All waiters are dressed in pitch black linen, discreetly attentive. You probably get the feeling already, the place is purely and truly about its food.

As we finished ordering, bread and butter were served immediately. The bread was very convincing of the quality we had expected for the rest of the meal, still warm with a crunchy crust and a fluffy yet solid centre. I told myself to have just one slice, but the plate was soon emptied as my wine and starter came.

 I loved the row of seatings where I sat on that day. They were a row of two-seaters leather bench/sofa(almost) separated with leather panel/handles. So you and your dining parter would sit sort of side by side, but with an angle, which is cosy and snugged, but you can also see each other’s face while talking without having to keep turning your head to a side. I personally would love to see this kind of seating arrangements used so much more! Someone tell me if they know whether there’s a specific name to these.

After a good look around my environment and a sightseeing trip to the toilet. My starter was on the table waiting for me as I got back: The grilled leek with boiled egg and tarragon. Leeks were so tender and grilled to perfection with this refreshing yet appetising vinegar dressing. The egg was boiled with a soft and slightly runny centre, completely cooled so the smell doesn’t over power the main character leek and its dressing.  

There were some pretty daring choices on the menu, e.g. Calf’s brain. As Chinese, we stop at nothing for delicious food. I was real tempted with the brain, but just didn’t feel quite in the right mood on the day. But hubby ordered lamb’s kidneys for main, so I happily took a few bites from his plate. The kidneys were really fresh, perfectly seasoned so there’s no unpleasant smell whatsoever. Pink in the middle, and just melted in my mouth.

My stewed duck leg was a success too. All the meat just fell off from the bone as my fork touched it. The soup was thickened from all the gelatine of the duck joint and skin. The seasoning was full of tastes from different herbs and spices, reminded me much of some Chinese seasonings, but I couldn’t put my finger on it.

Accompanied with some new apple potatoes and more bread, we washed everything down with our wine in no time.

Nothing but a few drops of sauce and herbs marked the existence of the wonderful dishes once on this table.

After the rather heavy mains we both had, a little sweet seem appropriate. We shared a rhubarb jelly, and ended this lunch which was all about the food.

And now I feel like I really need to correct myself when I described Hereford Road as just a local restaurant. It’s definitely more than that. Unlike many places now that try to be different with their location, concept or atmosphere. When a place is this serious about their food, it’s always worth a special trip.