The Juniper Tree (CLOSED)
Time Out says
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An organic British restaurant in Belsize Park.
Juniper Tree bills itself an ‘organic kitchen’, but it’s not one of those health food spots that’ll have roast dinner lovers running for the hills. This is a proper British restaurant serving proper British food – think Welsh lamb, Brixham crab and whole roasted plaice. It’s all pesticide-free, too.
I started in style with a plate of West Mersea oysters – cool and wonderfully creamy, they had a delicately succulent saltiness redolent of the sea. Next came lamb. An 8oz rump was served beautifully pink and drizzled with rich red wine sauce, the tender sweetness of the meat a perfect foil to the creamy potato gratin and slightly bitter kale it came served with. Also excellent was a soft salmon gravadlax with capers and rye bread.
A single (though substantial) gripe is that Juniper Tree does lack atmosphere. It was rather empty on my weekend visit, and while the look is smart it’s got the kind of plasticky wooden tables and slight whiff of disinfectant that makes a place feel cheaper than it is. The food though, is true Brit brilliance. And atmosphere comes with time.