antic pubs, catford, catford bridge tavern, catford tavern food, fresh sausage rolls, gurnard, kats blog, pork scratching, pubs in lewisham, real ales, scotch egg, soffles, south london, sunday roasts
Well it’s been a while for me to find the time to blog, but in the mean time I’ve been sampling the delights of Catford Bridge Tavern’s food – and I’ve tried to remember to take some photos before I gobble the food in front of me!
Firstly the beers
Catford Tavern have treated us to some fabulous selections recently including the Ruby Hop Cat, which has been brewed especially for the pub. The pub’s long bar offers a large and wonderful range that changes by the week. Never have I found a pub that offers so many ciders, stouts and bitters etc all at once!
The tavern takes advantage of this generous on-tap offering by organising impromptu events such as Trio of Stouts (served in 3 1/3 pint glasses) and Oysters. I’m gutted I was not around for this event but I’m told it was very successful, with all oyster platters selling out.
On Sundays, the pub offers a menu of roasts (with the addition of fish and vegetarian alternative dishes).
I have to say they have turned my opinion round: I never normally order roasts when I’m eating out as I often find it to be a bit boring and often the meat and veg are overcooked. Nothing, I thought, can rival my Mum’s roasts. Well…. it’s certainly giving her a run for its money.
The vegetables are full of flavour and beautifully cooked. There are many types of vegetable on the plate (hidden under the meat) with lovely roasties, and a tasty cauliflower cheese.
The gravy is very good. As is the creamy fresh tasting home-made horseradish side sauce.
I believe that the pub has made a good decision to put on roasts without the usual weekday menu on Sundays, as this has given them the opportunity to concentrate on producing top quality roasts. It is a compromise well worth taking in order to strive for perfection.
So far we’ve tried the beef, spotted (something) pork and the black-faced lamb. The care in choosing the origin of the meat is clear, and the care gone into cooking it has done it justice.
These meals are massive and so ordering starters are not really a clever plan, though a limited selection (bar snacks such as the sausage rolls and scotch eggs) are available.
The dining room is a lovely and bright place to enjoy this on a Sunday lunch, as the room is spacious, windows showing the leafy trees are wide and let a lot of light into this part of the pub. The décor is perfect for a Jubilee and Olympic year with bunting and sports features such as skittles and snooker holders adorn the walls.
I believe you can also have your meal in the other rooms of the pub on request.
Tuesday to Saturday
A mouthwatering menu is available. So far I’ve had the Pig’s cheeks starter, the Gurnard, and my partner’s had a special of Black-faced lamb pie with suet pastry crust.
I’ve never had pig’s cheeks before and I absolutely love them, the texture and taste is different, and really good. Unfortunately I’m at a loss to describe it, but I assure you it’s not in any way gross or weird. The dish was done very well with a good salad and parsnip puree, and sauce. I recommend trying it for yourself!
The Gurnard was really good -as was the rest of the dish: the buttery caper sauce with shrimps was fantastic with the new potatoes. If I were on death row, I’d order this as my last meal.
We’ve also had the Chocolate Brownie. I died and went to heaven with its chocolaty gooey sticky centre and crunchy outer, with lovely ice-cream….ohhh.
Oh yes girls, get yourselves one of these, it does solve everything.
Do be aware this menu changes slightly from time to time. Keeps you coming back 😉
Lastly, Bar Snacks:
These guys really know how to get people to pop in for a pint before heading home. You may be hungry and tired and need a distraction from your day -so you come to the Tavern for a pint, a snack and a board game!
My partner is currently teaching my how to play chess. Others include Guess Who, Scrabble, Battleship etc.
And bar snacks: we’ve enjoyed ‘Soffles’ -a paper bag of grilled spicy pitta pieces -an interesting alternative to crisps; chilli honey rosemary nuts (warning addictive); pork scratchings, scotch egg, sausage rolls. They also have pickled eggs, but I’ve never been a fan of the idea!
The scotch eggs and sausage rolls are freshly made on site – you’ll find Eddie the Chef occasionally ‘tweets’ to his followers when they’re hot out of the oven. The scotch egg at the Tavern is the first time I think I’ve tried what a scotch egg is really supposed to be like: its not like shop-bought ones -its got real meat (I warn you it’s not massively cooked to avoid overcooking -but I find this is to my liking), soft boiled egg, and a lovely outer, topped with flaky salt: deep-fried freshly when ordered (only available when the kitchen is open).
This is a lovely place to treat yourself and eat out -whether its a £2.50 scotch egg with your pint, or a full Roast on a Sunday.
Its not a cheap place, and since its opened I’ve probably spent more money than I would normally – but I think it’s good value as it is really good food and service (the staff have always been friendly to us -I’m pretty sure they are to everyone and clearly enjoy their jobs).
Over the years have eaten at quiet a few restaurants so I compare it to many places: pubs that offer this type of menu in Surrey for example are generally slightly more expensive than the Tavern, so I’m comfortable spending this much knowing its about right, if a bit better, value for what it is they’re offering.
In short I’m thrilled this place has opened on our doorstep and I want to shout out to all the locals that it’s here, and to go visit. This is a much needed boost to this area, and I expect the community spirit will strengthen from its presence 🙂