You might be fooled into thinking that this Fuller’s pub takes its name from the men and women flying into Heathrow (the flight patch is directly overhead this Chiswick pub), but you’d be wrong.
It’s called The Pilot after the horses that used to pull the trade barges down the Thames during low tide. The former stable, where they’d rest, is transformed into a swanky private room.
After a significant restoration, this neighbourhood pub is bigger and dare I say it, better than before. The bar area has been made wider; revealing a beautiful dining room and an outside space with heating.
The interior is quirky with lovely touches and great lighting after dark.
For a lover of gin, their infusions had my heart racing and after a few lessons from the boys at Sipsmith, they’ve got some great flavours on the go. I can vouch immediately for fig and rosemary and the rhubarb and custard. Especially tasty with ice picked from a humongous block.
So, to the food. I had the salt beef croquettes (£6.50) which were full-to-bursting with meat and mash, served on a bed of beetroot.
Nice. Mr had the smoked trout which was a beautiful cure, sliced thickly (£6.50) with a side of razor-thin fennel and apple salad.
For the main course, I had the Ox Cheek (£15.00), and it was a generous portion served on a bed of field mushrooms and straw potatoes.
We had a side of Heritage Carrots and black kale (£3.50).
Mr’s neck of lamb (£15.00) was genius. Cooked pink it was full of flavour and served on a bed of lightly spiced lentils and a generous moat of yogurt.
Yes. I was full but took one for the team and had the set custard and poached plum (£6.00). The fruit was magnificently cooked but a shame that the custard was grainy in texture, a sign of overheating.
The bill including drinks (2 x Sipsmith gin and Fever Tree tonic; 1 pint of Montana Red and a glass of Richland Cabernet Sauvignon) came to £80.75. Service isn’t included and we were glad to read that any tips left go directly to the staff.
I was given £50 towards the bill.