The best things the CODE team ate this week: 2 October 2020

Published 2 October 2020

Charred mackarel with beetroot, The Swan Wine Kitchen

At home kit, The Vurger Co.

Soda bread with mushroom pate, Stoney Street

Chicken, mushroom and tarragon pie, The Pie Room

Classic BAO bun with crispy pork, BAO

From Soho to Stoney Street. Here are the best things the CODE team ate this week.

BAO Soho

Having (shamefully) never visited the much-adored Taiwanese restaurant, the wind and rain of last weekend couldn’t stop me doing so, and I happily took my seat at one of the Soho site’s outdoor tables, complete with BAO umbrella to huddle beneath. The XO beef butter sweetcorn came highly recommended, but I could have easily eaten ten (no, seriously) of the classic BAO buns with confit pork belly and crispy onions. And, of course, the fried Horlicks ice cream lived up to its legendary status too.
Minna Gabertas, partners & memberships

Charred mackarel with beetroot, The Swan Wine Kitchen

The Swan Wine Kitchen, Chapel Down

Swapping London for the rolling Kent countryside led me to Tenterden and the Chapel Down winery. Set into the vineyard is The Swan, which naturally features a wine list centred around the estate. We enjoyed a set lunch of charred mackerel with beetroot, followed by roast chicken then almond cake. Suitably sated we headed for a highly enjoyable tour of the vineyard before settling in for a tasting. Naturally given the current restrictions we refrained from using the spittoon…
Will Lake, COO

At home kit, The Vurger Co.

The Vurger Co.

I’m sure I’m not the only one that’s noticed that an unfortunate side effect of the pandemic is the rise in plastic, be it home kits, disposable cutlery or takeaway boxes. So, I was pleased when I received a home kit from The Vurger Co. which was almost entirely plastic free. Anyway, enough about that, because the food is the focus here, and the home burger kit is most definitely worth shouting about. Whether you’re a fan of ‘fake’ meat or not, even the most dedicated carnivores would struggle to find fault with this burger. Incredibly realistic and perfectly tender and juicy – complete with a buttery brioche bun and burger sauce – my whole family agreed we need to order them again, and soon.
Harriet Prior, editorial assistant

Soda bread with mushroom pate, Stoney Street

Stoney Street by 26 Grains

You can now visit Stoney Street by 26 Grains at night when it turns into a candlelit wine bar with a selection of small plates, low intervention, organic wines and some stunning cocktails. The green Tarragon collins was fresh, and the caffe Picon with cardamom cold press coffee is Stoney Street’s answer to espresso martini (and in my opinion, more than a match!). We enjoyed duck rillettes, and a lovely selection of Charcuterie and warm soda bread with mushroom pate. This is a perfect spot for any time of the day in the heart of Borough Market.
Tom Pilgrim, partners & memberships

Chicken, mushroom and tarragon pie, The Pie Room

The Pie Room

Calum Franklin, the hardest working man in pie-business, pulled out all the stops for his first book’s launch dinner. The pastry extravaganza stretched from prawn thermidor vol au vents to an orange and golden syrup steamed pudding – with stops for this stunning chicken, mushroom and tarragon pie and a sublime cheesy dauphinoise and caramelised onion pie along the way. The book is suitably brilliant and I will be cooking from it, but nothing beats the mastery of Franklin and team in the Holborn Dining Room.
Lisa Markwell, editor

The Crown at Bray

There has been a lot of talk around people leaving cities behind post-covid. Working from home long term has become an ever more realistic prospect (at least for part of the week) and outside space has moved up the list of priorities. One such friend has done just that, moving down the River Thames to the village of Bray, giving me the perfect excuse to visit as we work our way through the seven Michelin stars (as well as two Michelin plates…) Lunch at Heston’s pub The Crown in their new heated ‘autumn garden’ marquee (apparently allowed by the council due to covid) featured a particularly generous portion of skate with samphire, butter sauce and confit potato on the side.
Will Lake, COO

Skate with samphire, butter sauce and confit potato, The Crown at Bray

To read more of the best things the CODE team ate this week, click here

Search results
Weekly bulletin. Eyes and ear of the industry