On a warm Thursday evening in Notting Hill, the pink clouds and colour pop houses were enough alone to pop a smile on my face, however I had a greater reason for grinning as I was headed for new West London eatery, West Thirty Six. This dream of a destination lies on the charming Golborne Road, which I believe to be one of the last unspoilt / anti-franchised areas of London, with its iconic Trellic towers on one end and countless antique and bric-a-brac stores, there is simply no room for a Tesco Express or a Pret A Manger!
West Thirty Six is a converted 3-storey old Townhouse on Golborne Road in Portobello, serving up classic items from a grill house menu and adding a unique twist on them. There are plenty of pleasing little nooks and crannies about the house (perfect for a game of hide and seek), such as the 'Tool Shed' outside overlooking the urban train tracks of West London or the hidden outdoor terrace on the second floor.
The downstairs dining hall is light and bright, jolly and bustling with a familiar industrial yet rustic feel to it. Head up an out-of-the-way staircase and you enter the first floor dining room, which couldn’t be more different with its exclusive and intimate atmosphere, subdued lighting and sleek black leather chairs; this is the place to come for a sexy dinner date. The third floor has a broken up lounge area and cocktail bar, perfect for a night cap or for cocktail guzzling at any time of day.
As you could imagine, this type of venue and the area it is situated in is bound to attract a few famous faces. We ended up chatting to Rosie Fortescue from Made in Chelsea, I didn't know who she was and called the show 'The Only Way Is Chelsea'; not so cool. She was returning a couple of days later for her Sunday lunch, so was clearly as sold as we were on this versatile venue.
Food, Drink and Service
One of the things that really stood out to me was the service we received. We were treated like regulars that had been coming back for years, it was exceptional and our every whim and need was catered to as soon as we entered.
After a quick whip round the building, we were led to a cosy little table for two on the second floor, took a moment to catch our breath and then laid our eyes upon the feastly menu that lay before us.
We chose well with the assistance of our attentive waiter Valentino, selecting crab and avocado trifle to start which arrives in a glass to be spooned onto your crunchy brown toast. It was flavoursome and zingy and went down a treat. We also had smoked maple chipotle chicken wings, which were so crispy and salty they reminded me of pork scratchings, but the chicken inside was oh-so tender.
For our main we chose to share; the most appealing to me on the menu was the Lobster which arrives with a side of to-die-for shoe string fries. The Lobster was light yet sumptuous and juicy, cooked to perfection with a scattering of burnt seeds on top and served with a creamy garlic and hazelnut butter. To match this culinary delight, we went for a Veal dish (off the menu) suggested by Valentino, the meat was thinly sliced, delicate and delicious which was a brilliant accompaniment to the Lobster.
This was really enough food, but we were (ever so easily) talked into ordering a third course. We put our trust into Valentino’s good hands and let him order for us; a sublime slice of Apple Pie served straight from the baking tin with piping hot custard and crushed Banoffie Pie!
If you ever catch yourself out in West London on a Sunday with no plans, this could be somewhere to while away the hours. Start off with a drink in the Tool Shed, enjoy something from the fantastic brunch menu in the first floor dining room followed by cocktails and dessert in the third floor cocktail bar. Do come to this venue if you're hoping for top quality service and food, it makes for a memorable evening out. The only bad thing about this establishment is that there isn't a fourth floor with a bedroom of similar comfort and luxury, because once you come to West Thirty Six I can assure you, you wont be rushing to go back to reality.