Simple classics, beautifully cooked, served in an atmosphere elegant yet relaxed: a stylish place to meet and eat, work or relax in the heart of Kings’ Cross St Pancras – gateway to Europe and the North. Settle into beautiful handmade Italian furniture. Choose from a menu which makes decisions truly difficult. Take breakfast from seven, a short pause for elevenses, sit for swift, classic lunches or relax for dinner as the light dims. Plum & Spilt Milk keeps service turning from dawn through to midnight, offering nothing but the finest ingredients, served with unrivalled attention to detail: twice-baked smoked haddock soufflé or slow cooked Jacobs Ladder with parsnip mash followed by lemon meringue pie or chocolate fondant - food which leaves you replete, but dying to return.
Plum + Spilt Milk
Plum + Spilt Milk Picture Gallery
All In London Review
Max-out on the railway station experience at this fine establishment
I was reminded of the transporter experience in Star Trek when making the short and abrupt change from the frenetic hustle and bustle of the station concourse to the calm interior of the restaurant. Not that Plum + Spilt Milk is an oasis of pure tranquillity – what London restaurant can claim to deliver on that score? – but it is warmly comfortable and stylistically easy on the eye: walls in blue matt, parquet floor, no brash colours or gimmicky gewgaws; clean lines and simple white tableware; elegant designer pendant lighting suspended from a high ceiling; attentive, unpretentious service (a micro torch appeared from nowhere when a waiter surmised there might be difficulty reading the menu’s small print).
There is a bar downstairs but it is tiny in size and was so packed it created a déjà vu- moment of a recent train journey and I had to squeeze my way out with thirst unquenched; far better to enjoy a pre-dinner drink ensconced in the restaurant. There are some innovative house cocktails (£9.50 to £12.50), like the 1854 which mixes a vermouth (Noilly Prat) with smoked pineapple syrup and crushed cardamom, supposedly to evoke the smoky atmosphere of the old station, and the Lady Violet – a concoction of elderberry vodka, champagne and raspberry liquor – christened after the name of the old hotel’s smoking room for ladies (the first in the world, apparently).
The all-day menu is solidly British, sensibly resisting the temptation to shock, with fishy first courses like shrimps (£9.75) and Maldon oysters (£3.75 each) but also, lamb’s kidneys (£8). There are also international classics like Caesar salad (£7.25), though mine came with outsized croutons that were decidedly hard to bite through. Main dishes are divided into meat, fish and vegetarian and my choice of Dover sole with seaweed butter (£26.50) arrived with just the right temperature and it tasted quite exquisite. For dessert it seemed only right to try the plum and spilt milk (named after the livery of the staff on the The Flying Scotsman train that operated out of King’s Cross in the good old days of railway travel). Like most of the desserts it was priced at £7, though the Baked Alaska is £13.50 and more appropriate for diners who always purchase first- class train tickets.
Top tip: to max-out on the railway station experience, there is one corner table that has the Victorian clock tower of St Pancras looking down on you - but with no CCTV camera (I don't think) – so book this if you can.
Reviewed by Sean Sheehan
on Mar 12, 2014
Published on Mar 12, 2014
In The News
Mark is overseeing all menus at the King’s Cross St Pancras boutique hotel.
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The Great Northern Hotel houses Plum & Spilt Milk, a casual British restaurant with stunning art deco design. The menu includes pork cutlet with an almond and gooseberry salad, beef Wellington, and halibut poached in olive oil.
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