After having a delicious meal at the Brixton Diner a few months ago I've been super keen to head back to one of the Pickled Fork pop-ups. When I saw the menu for the July #Grimedining pop-up I knew I had to book myself a place ASAP so off I popped to Barmouth Kitchen (a lovely little cafe) in Wandsworth on Friday to have an incredibly delicious meal.
Since the Brixton Diner, the Pickled Fork boys have parted ways and now it's just Alex heading up the venture of fine dining without the price tag. For £35 we were promised a four course meal using seasonal, locally sourced produced. Cindy and myself provided the gin and tonics whilst we were kindly gifted with a bottle of prosecco.
Before the first proper course was served we were presented with a little entrée and a taster of Alex's next pop-up in Brixton later this summer; meatballs with accompanying beer. The beef meatball topped with cheddar cheese and smoked bacon was an absolute delight, the meat was juicy and the cheese was soft and tasty, a perfect combination. I'm not a huge fan of beer but this small sample from By The Horns Brewery had a sweet hint and wasn't too bitter which is the thing I really dislike about beer. A delicious start to the evening and a good way to promote the Brixton pop-up which I will definitely be visiting.
The first proper course was a deconstructed Salt Beef Sandwich with Grilled Corn Bread, Home Smoked Streaky Bacon, The Pickled Fork's Grain Mustard, Kohlrabi and Cucumber Slaw. I was really looking forward to this, I love corn bread and salt beef so I knew it would be delicious and believe me it was just that. I don't normally like cucumber but it was fresh with a nice crunch and combined with the soft bread and tender beef I was left wanting a full version of this sandwich.
The second course was one of my favourites; Heritage Tomato Cured Hake with Tomato Liquor, Young Tomato Leaves, Dill Granola and Dill Mayonnaise. The hake was cooked to perfection with it being just over raw in the middle, the texture was fantastic. The assortment of granola and tomatoes added a fantastic texture complexity to the meal and the dill mayonnaise had a lovely tang.
The main course was one of the best pork bellies I've had in a long time; Cherry Roasted Pork Belly with Pickled Cherries, Crushed Courgette, Courgette flowers, Runner Bean and Watercress Relish. The pork was cooked to perfection, succulent and juicy on the bottom with a crispy and delicious top, I wish I could eat some right now. I loved the sour cherries and the courgettes, a perfect accompaniment.
By the time the dessert came I was feeling full but I knew I had room for something sweet yet light and what was served was just perfect; Beetroot and Carob Parfait with Beetroot Crunch, Redcurrant Smoothie, Fresh Redcurrant and Basil Salad. Carob is a chocolate alternative with the same great taste as chocolate but less calories and paired with the beetroot it tasted like a delicious sorbet-come-brownie. The smoothie, juicy berries and crunchy meringue added to a great variety of taste and texture.
I absolutely adored every element of the meal and cannot wait to try more pop-ups from Alex. Everything tasted stunning and 4 courses which actually ended up being 5 was terrific value for £35. This really is fine dining without the hefty price tag and I cannot recommend this pop-up enough. Every Wednesday and Friday in Wimbledon and Wandsworth respectively for the rest of July means you have plenty of opportunities to try it out.
Do you think you'll visit The Pickled Fork x