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Foxlow Balham – CLOSED

Restaurants, British Balham
4 out of 5 stars
(11user reviews)
Foxlow Balham – CLOSED

Time Out says

Please note, Foxlow Balham has now closed. Time Out Food editors, July 2019.

It’s not a great start when the first words that come out of your mouth as you walk into a restaurant are ‘It’s a pity.’ ‘It’s a pity they didn’t really revamp it,’ we muttered to one another (the site was previously Harrison’s, a smartish brasserie part-owned by Rick Stein). Then: ‘It’s a pity that the one thing they did change has made it worse’ (the bar area near the entrance has gone, presumably to encourage people to head to the downstairs Owl Bar, but creating an odd, desolate ‘lobby’ space instead).

We had a vested interest. We were four locals, all willing this latest outpost of Foxlow, a ‘smokehouse’ from Hawskmoor founders Will Beckett and Huw Gott, to be so superb we could come here every week until everyone knew our names and were frankly sick of us.

It’s not all bad. Poor design decisions aside, the cooking is mostly excellent. There was a creamy white-bean houmous, served with a green chilli-and-garlic ‘harissa’ and thick slices of good bread. Also good was a mashed-up burrata on toast with the clean, green notes of a sorrel salsa verde, and a salad of baby kale and beetroot chunks teamed with mandolined-thin slices of fresh horseradish.

Red meat mains, including top-notch steak and melt-in-the-mouth beef shortrib, were also excellent; as was rich mac ’n’ cheese with a breadcrumb crust. But the chicken burger – ordered in a panic because our waiter had neglected to mention that they were out of the beef burgers – was fairly pedestrian, and the biggest disappointment of the lot.

Desserts were a mixed bunch: our passion fruit ‘cheesecake’ turned out to be more of a so-so mousse-in-a-glass, but the dinky jug of boozy, buttery ‘bourbon caramel’ sauce, served warm for pouring over soft serve ice cream and crushed candied walnuts, is an absolute must-order. Perhaps the greatest let-down came from the staff. At the original Foxlow, service is exceptional: the perfect balance of chumminess and professionalism. But on our visit to this latest Foxlow, our waiter regularly crossed the line into overfamiliarity, and was more interested in being a full-of-catchphrases quipster than in properly describing the menu. We hope we just got unlucky on the night. It’s a pity.

Details

Address: 15-19 Bedford Hill
London
SW12 9EX
Transport: Balham Overground
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Users say (11)

4 out of 5 stars

Average User Rating

4 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:5
  • 4 star:2
  • 3 star:3
  • 2 star:1
  • 1 star:0
LiveReviews|11
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Tastemaker

Very average brunch spot in an area that seems to have some of the best brunch options in London.  Perhaps they have decided not to compete with the other places in the area and we should have known when there were queues around the block for Milk and Brickwood that walking into a place with only 2 tables taken was a bad idea! The food was ok, the service was slow (I am not sure why given the staff to customer ratio), the pricing is about what you would expect to pay for a good brunch option. Perhaps this is a place that does steak well in the evening and should just stick to that.....

tastemaker

I was looking for somewhere for a catch up with friends over bottomless brunch and after lots of searching I found this place online and was seduced by the menu. When the food arrived I was not disappointed, the chicken waffle is the stuff dreams are made of.  The staff were attentive when it came to refilling glasses and were always keen to help.  The interior is really nice too although it was quite noisy with how busy it was at the time.  I'll definitely be back to try out the rest of the menu!

tastemaker

As a brunch lover I was very keen to try Foxlow's. 

It's only now I realise that is an offshoot to Hawksmoor- and you can definitely tell. The food is superb. There were so many scrummy sounding things on the menu that I wanted to try, but opted for the fired chicken and egg on a croissant waffle with sausage gravy. 

My eyes were bigger than my belly at first and didn't think it would be big enough- however, it was so filling and rich, every mouth full was a taste explosion.


The staff and atmosphere was lovely, I booked a table but you could risk it and walk in as the place is huge. 


Will be going back to eat my way through the menu.

tastemaker

When Foxlow first opened in Balham, it was joyously lacking in buggies clogging up the walkways. But now, they are well and truly in residence. On a Saturday afternoon, there were no less than 7 buggies clogging up the restaurant, each containing a tiny bundle of cuteness that was ready to unleash ear-piercing screams at any moment. 


Much like their parents, I'm sure they were just hungry. The wait for food was almost as long as waiting for a chicken to lay a new egg. Orders are taken promptly enough, but each of our table went through 3 cups of bottomless filter coffee before the food arrived. The coffee is a bottomless bargain at £3, but it needs to be when the food is as slow as it is. 


When it arrives, it IS delicious. Like.... seriously yummy. The Hawksmoor quality is definitely here. The croissant waffle with chicken and gravy is plate-lickingly good, and the poached eggs were perfectly warm and squidgy. And the staff are friendly, warm and accommodating, but they need to be when the kitchen seems to be working against them. 

Tastemaker

The cheaper, more casual younger sister to the coveted Hawksmoor restaurants, Foxlow’s brings a touch of fine dining to Balham with delicious food with fresh, seasonal ingredients.

We opted to share some small plates as a starter; rich, hearty meatballs which oozed mozzarella from their centres and crispy, fresh calamari with lively chilli. Both were really tasty and were large enough to tie you over until the main event arrives. The roast chicken main, with ridiculously crispy skin, and sumptuous black pudding and a smooth celeriac puree was comforting while refined. For something a bit more suitable for spring, the hake with creamy butter beans and sweet tomatoes is cooked perfectly. To top it all off, try the sticky toffee pudding which is light, fluffy and indulgent with  fresh clotted cream.

The décor is relaxed, exposed brick and wood with cosy lights, giving a lovely atmosphere to your meal. But what I remember the most about this meal? The staff. The staff here are amazing- so friendly and happy to chat and give recommendations. It is rare nowadays to find waiters who don’t think they are too cool for school, but these guys couldn’t make your meal more enjoyable.

Slightly pricier than some of the other Balham options, this a perfect restaurant for a special occasion or when your parents come to stay and kindly offer to settle the bill…

Top Tip: head there for Tuesday night dinner- on Tuesday’s it is BYOB, and there is a great wine merchant a few seconds walk from the restaurant which offers a discount if you say you are dining at Foxlow’s, so you can grab a great bottle of vino for under twenty pounds.


I love the fact that you can have a blow out but there are loads of healthy options too.


We went to Foxlow expecting too much. Left very disappointed. Service was horrible. Took them 20 min to get our drink order and when someone finally came she was crying! Ugh. It was not even busy. They forgot the kids drinks (which was a big no no in my book) and then the kids food came out last! The chicken on the kids menu was not grilled as described on the menu rather crispy fried. I asked for my steak medium-rare and it came out mooing. My husbands portion was so tiny he left still hungry.  To top it all off it was Father's Day. Disappointing.

Tastemaker

I had a very naughty brunch in Foxlow Balham a few weeks ago and was in heaven. While my dining companion responsibly went for one of the salads, I decided that for a weekend treat I deserved the fried chicken, egg and croissant waffle. And oh, was it good. Crispy chicken, a delicious bone marrow gravy, a runny egg, a light fluffy waffle, and loads of maple syrup. Get yourself one of these ASAP!!! Add bottomless bloody mary for £14.50 and you've got a very happy Saturday on your hands.


After much anticipation around Foxlow opening in Balham, and struggling to get a table Thursday - Saturday over the past few weeks, my boyfriend and I visited Foxlow for lunch on Sunday. 


The restaurant has a family friendly atmosphere which made for a relaxed meal and the food was pretty good. We shared the burrata to start and I had the Sirloin for main which was really nice, although on the rarer side of medium rare. They offered to trim the fat from the steak before serving it, but I was intrigued to see how fatty the steak could be, so I said they could leave it on (and oh my goodness was it fatty), but aside from that it was lovely. I ordered a side of chips, which were overly salty (although handy for the hangover I was nursing) and we shared a bottle of the house red which was good value for the money at £18. 


My boyfriend went for the roast dinner which came with a huge Yorkshire pudding and a lot of food envy from my side of the table, and reported it to be delicious. The over all experience was good - the staff were reasonably attentive, although possibly a little hungover themselves, and the food was good enough, it just isn't Hawksmore. 


But, saying that, I will return, probably on a Tuesday when it is BYOB!

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