Winter Comforts

In November I find myself mourning that the summer is over but excited that Christmas is well on its way. It’s the inbetweeny month that you wish away so you can start enjoying the festive season. But actually let’s not wish away time, November isn’t all that bad. It’s the perfect time to go out for warm comfort food before things get really busy. There’s a few restaurants that I want to visit this month to get my comfort food fix:

I personally cannot think of anything more comforting than mac ‘n’ cheese. It’s the best food to give you that warm fuzzy feeling on a cold evening. If you want an upscale version of the classic dish, Hawksmoor lifts this home comfort and adds a gourmet flair. The sauce has a distinctively smoky flavour from the blend of cheeses (Cheddar, Ogleshield and Stilto). Hawksmoor has two takes on mac ‘n’ cheese: traditional and with lobster.

The Ivy Café in Marylebone is known for serving up a mean shepherd’s pie. For me this dish has be served volcanic hot and this is exactly how it is here. The Keen’s cheddar mash is fluffy and the slow-braised lamb’s shoulder with beef mince is full of flavour – The Ivy Cafe hit the nail on the head with this dish. There’s an appealing drinks menu, so it would be rude not to order a cocktail or two…

Leading up to Christmas it’s acceptable to have roast at any time and day of the week. And I like to make the most of it. Even though Vinoteca is best-known as a wine bar and it serves a good roast. Every roast is paired with the perfect tipple. You can have a Spanish red to go with the roast topside of Longhorn beef, a South African white to pair with the white pork belly and apple sauce, or an Austrian red to accompany the pan-roast leg of Elwy Valley lamb. As for the trimmings: duck fat roast potatoes, Yorkshire pudding, carrot mash, greens and gravy. Enough said.