"works closely with local suppliers to provide diners with fresh, seasonal and delicious meals"Review Rating: Reviewed by Laurel
Should one find oneself in the City of an evening or enjoying the trappings of St Paul’s at the weekend, one could do worse than pay a visit to The Happenstance. Situated right in front of the London landmark, the bar cum restaurant, part of the Drake & Morgan group, works closely with local suppliers to provide diners with fresh, seasonal and delicious meals. Meat is from Allens of Mayfair, bread and pastries from award-winning artisan bakery The Flour Station in Borough Market; this is properly fresh London food.
From build-your-own-bloodies at brunch to a jam-packed main menu of sharers, classic mains, seasonal salads, fresh seafood and traditional Sunday roasts, there are plenty of options for the hungry diner.
I visited one Saturday evening when the place was pretty quiet. A handful of guests were enjoying drinks and only two other tables were dining; I imagine it would be a lot busier during the week when the surrounding offices are in action. It’s an informal setting, almost slightly warehousey in feel, with potted herbs on the tables and low-hanging lights casting a casual ambiance.
To start we plumped for the chicken satay with peanut sauce, of which there could have been a little more to be honest, and proper crunchy prawn crackers, along with a helping of delicious tempura crispy squid. Mains were a surf n turf of 10oz ribeye and half a Scottish lobster for my chum, with a trio of fries: Cowboy fries with honey, chilli and garlic, Roman fries with parmesan, truffle and rosemary (epic!) and chipped potatoes. Those were some damn good carbs. I had a rather delicious Maryland buttermilk chicken burger, perfectly crispy and crunchy, with a cheeky side of mac n cheese with leeks and bacon, which was pretty darn tasty.
In fact the only disappointment with the food at The Happenstance was the dessert; my knickerbocker glory of layered chocolate ice cream and whipped cream was overly sickly sweet and not particularly tasty. It certainly could have done with some ingredients other than just those two. I can’t vouch for the others on the menu, by that point we were both stuffed to the gills anyway, but the chocolate brownie that came out to the next table looked pretty darn tasty. Might have to go back and try it some time…
Laurel reviewed The Happenstance on Mon 12 May 2014