At 3pm on a sunny Saturday afternoon, the beer garden was again, packed. Prams everywhere, children toddling around, I wondered why they weren't dumped in the soundproof crèche that had been built three months previously. I'm not a particularly child-friendly person when hungover and seeking recovery down the boozer. Mussels and chips (£8) were perfect; sweet, plump flesh were in a cider, cream and leek sauce. Chips were crispy and salty and the mayonnaise tasted home-made. Just as I was considering picking up the bowl to drink the sauce out of, spoons appeared - "you looked like you were at that crucial sauce slurping stage". Top marks for attentive service.
A few hours later when the kids were wheeled off to bed and the walk to the bar became a bit more wobbly, we had some buttermilk fried chicken served with a coleslaw dip. Juicy and delicious, we scorched our fingers trying to stuff them in our drunken faces. There was no hint of the usual dry or stringy chicken; apparently they use a Thomas Keller reciepe whereby the chicken is brined and then marinated in the buttermilk. It's a winning bar snack.
So, another good reason to live South East. I will be back imminently (and not just because I left my bank card there); great staff, a (slightly amorous) pub dog, and I saw a burgers go past that were double patties. Meaty goodness.
131-133 Dulwich Road
Tel: 020 7326 4987