If it weren’t for the whole ‘gaining a gazillion pounds’ aspect, I’d be a three-course dining kinda gal all the freaking time. Unfortunately, I’ve got that type of metabolism where I put on a stone by just looking at food. With a two-weeks of a carb-free diet standing behind me, I decided to venture into the city of London, to the Walkers of Whitehall for a plump-me-up meal.
If you, like me, have an awful sense of direction, get your Google Maps out. Walkers of Whitehall is out of sight, snuggled between a couple of buildings on Craig’s Court, just a stone’s throw from Trafalgar Square. From the outside, it looks like your traditional looking English watering hole - gold signage, glittering lamps and brick work galore (but not all is as it seems). Inside, and up a set of small steps you’ll find the bar; which bears a nice clean layout, with its corners offering plenty of seating; but downstairs is where we were seated for the night.
Making our way to the dining room, we passed a grand diamond chandelier that looked like it was taken from the set of The Great Gatsby; undoubtedly one of the most stand out features of the venue, these kind of touches are what make Walkers a sophisticated spot. Seated at an emerald green leather booth (where the table was dressed with snow-white napkins and polished cutlery), we were offered a great sense of privacy - ideal for a dinner date and possibly a business lunch. Looking around we also noticed that the walls of the dining room were adorned with pictures of London’s iconic Trafalgar Square, another lovely little touch given its location. This joint is like a little slice of heaven, so if you’re looking to escape London’s chaotic streets for a drink or a full-blown meal, you know where to go.
The Food and Drink
With service on the ball, we ordered and were served our drinks within ten minutes of arriving. Straight from the bar came The Hugo (gin, elderflower, mint, cucumber, soda) and a glass of prosecco spiked with pink grapefruit syrup £7.50. The Hugo hit the spot with its refreshing notes, and if I’m honest, I was gutted I didn’t go for it myself. Starters wise, I and my comrade ordered the dukkah hummus with flatbread £5.50 and the deep fried calamari. Once again I was left disappointed that I didn’t order different. The hummus had a spicy edge and came with plenty of flatbread for dipping. Although the calamari was cooked to perfection, I wasn’t a fan of the batter - it was a bit too grainy. Unable to pick two different courses we were sold on the cod with saffron potatoes, fennel and aioli £15.50. The presentation of the dish was immaculate and the portion of cod was more than generous. To accompany our main we ordered two sides, the house fries £3 and the grilled corn £3. The fries were home-made with the skin left on, while the corn came out golden and sprinkled with paprika. Overall it was a filling and well worth the money meal. As the saying goes - there is always room for dessert. From the many calorie-ridden options calling out from the menu, we were drawn to the chocolate pot with orange biscuits £5.50. Let me just say - it’s one of the best desserts I’ve ever had. Very rich and heavy, but devilishly moreish.
The Clientele and Atmosphere
Visiting Walkers of Whitehall on a Bank Holiday meant that the place was very quiet. We had the entire downstairs restaurant to ourselves for the later of our stay. This isn’t really surprising though, a lot of people flee the city for the countryside when an extra day is added to the weekend. Although there were a few people in the upstairs bar sipping cocktails and enjoying pints, I’m not really in a position to paint the atmosphere in a fair light. Looks like I’ll just have to return to Craig’s Court in the future to find out (sarcastic sigh).
Gin fuelled cocktails, fresh as fresh can be dishes and dessert to die for, Walkers of Whitehall sure did manage to plump me up and I cannot wait to return on a busier night for a taste of their atmosphere.