"A great pub on a very social corner of Chelsea"Review Rating: Reviewed by All In London
Returning to the D of C after a prolonged absence was like catching up with an old friend.
I used to be a Monday evening pub quiz regular but at some point decided that fuzzy headed Tuesday mornings were not all that great and decided to quit. The food and drink were good back in those days and nothing has changed.
This Geronimo Group pub follows the well-proven template of a good and well-priced wine list, a simple and wholesome menu of what I would call great value food, and friendly staff.
With the sun shining for the first time in months it was hard not to be cheery on arriving at our table and the very friendly and efficient staff kept the mood up throughout the meal. I had a starter from the specials list of tomato, avocado and Cornish brie covered crustini which was absolutely delicious. Nice warm, creamy brie with ripe avocado (not guaranteed by any means), tasty beef tomatoes and all in a perfectly dressed little green salad. My dinner partner had chicken Caesar salad which was exactly as it should have been. The chef was not trying to be clever and reinvent the wheel but served up moist chicken (and plenty of it) with crunchy lettuce leaves and lovely anchovies, topped with shaved parmesan and again dressed perfectly.
For the main course I had the grilled rib-eye steak, wild mushroom sauce and hand-cut chips. This was the most expensive main course on the menu at £17. All other main courses were under £11. My meat was cooked medium-rare as I had requested and was juicy and very flavoursome. The hand-cut chips were a fraction undercooked for my taste but I am told I like my chips slightly crisper than most. The mushroom sauce was good and all in all the dish was delicious. The other main course for our table was a special of leg of lamb with couscous. The couscous was a little stodgy so that it didn't separate fully and wasn't as light and fluffy as perhaps it could have been, but it had little vegetables within it which added colour and flavour. The lamb was cooked to perfection and was a big hit. A side order of crunchy green beans added a healthy touch to the course and put big smiles on both our faces.
Normally I would have called time at this point but being reviewers we had to go for puddings, so I went for the Bramley apple and cranberry with cinnamon crumble and my companion went for sticky toffee pudding with toffee sauce and vanilla ice cream. My crumble was golden on top and hid a very generous helping of apple and cranberry beneath. Perfect. The sticky toffee pudding was moist and drenched in delicious sauce. Both puddings were £5.
Having washed the food down with a good bottle of Sangiovese at £20.50 we then had coffee and fresh mint tea and sat back to reflect on being well fed and watered in buzzy but not obtrusively loud surroundings and with great service.
The bill rounded off the meal at a very reasonable £40 a head. This is a great pub with a good bar area on a very social corner of Chelsea.
All In London reviewed The Duke of Clarence on Tue 25 May 2010