It’s difficult to pinpoint the moment at which the two-word phrase ‘Gordon Ramsay’ became associated less with stellar cooking and more with the unpleasant, pantomimic version of himself he plays on TV. At any rate, walking into a Ramsay restaurant today inspires mixed feelings; you’re as likely to find yourself musing on his various misjudgments and tabloid run-ins as you are discussing the food. The ambience at this sprawling waterside gastropub – river views if you’re lucky, white walls and poor acoustics if you’re not – is inspired more by the Canary Wharf trading floor than the London local, with saloon-bar informality replaced by something more corporate. Although some people must treat it as their neighbourhood taproom, it doesn’t feel like one. Still, the kitchen has its eye on the ball. The cooking isn’t complex, but it’s at its best when required to do something other than simply present the ingredients: flavourful chicken stew with garlic mash, broad beans and mushrooms, say, or lamb sweetbreads on toast. The burgers might have cut the mustard five years ago, but the underseasoned version we were served failed to stand comparison with rivals around town. Service is charm-free but alpha-dog efficient, delivered with a rictus grin.
|Venue name:||The Narrow||Contact:|
44 Narrow St
|Opening hours:||Open Mon-Sat 12noon-11pm, Sun 12noon-10.30pm|
|Transport:||Tube: Limehouse DLR|