Best gastro pubs with rooms: The Malt House, London
You don't have to go to the countryside to find a top-notch pub, The Malt House is in Fulham, London, but provides all the comforts you'd expect, plus a lengthy gin menu.
While you can stay overnight very comfortably, food comes first at The Malt House. It’s arguably Fulham’s most elegant pub; the décor and menus are a cut above those of average gastro boozers, treading a carefully drawn line between formal and casual. Service is prompt but never rushed, and the place lights up with twinkling fairy lights in the evening.
What to eat Pick from the chef’s seasonal specials for British ingredients. Try Devonshire hog’s pudding to start – an unashamedly fat, juicy sausage, with fresh Somerset peas and swirls of crispy crackling. Homemade lemon and black pepper butter is a triumph with cured sea trout and olive bread. Stargazy pie with whole sardines, salmon, cod and pancetta is a whimsical main, or choose the popular Malt House beefburger with punchy garlic and parsley fries. Don’t miss the chocolate fondant for dessert, with its glossy cherry sauce centre.
Star supplier Ask for extra Barbers cheddar on your beefburger. It’s a sharp, tangy cheese from a family-run dairy in Somerset.
The booze There’s a lengthy gin menu, and wines change according to the season. You can order them by the carafe, too – try Petit Chablis, Domaine du Colombier for a dry, accompaniment to that stargazy pie.
The bed Rooms are serene, despite the brouhaha of Fulham outside, with pastel-coloured walls and air conditioning. But they’re fairly simple; for more glitz, make your way to the modern bar downstairs.
The breakfast A continental, delivered to your table, includes a bowl of fresh fruit, and warm homemade pastries, and cereals.
The bill Doubles from £135 b&b, mains from £12.50. (malthousefulham.co.uk)
Written October 2015
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