Sunday 11 March 2012

The Ship: not quite ship shape

The Ship in Wandsworth Town continually gets rave reviews from bloggers and punters alike, all of which should mean that the food is very good indeed. So when I was tasked with choosing a place to go for dinner with a couple of my bosses from work and their wives, one of whom lives in Battersea, the other in Richmond, The Ship seemed like the obvious choice.

Situated on the edge of the Thames, this place is normally rockin' with well-to-do youngsters - their BBQs in summer are legendary.  As we went on a Thursday evening in March, it was a more downbeat vibe.

To start I had the pigeon breast, lentils and pancetta crisp.  This was delicious, melt in the mouth.  However a few of the others had salt and pepper squid - so overdone it was almost painful to eat - the batter like shards!  The Fashionista had the scallops with fennel puree and crisped fennel.  This looked impressive and tasted quite nice.

Piegon and lentils - tasted a lot better than it looks!

Scallops and fennel
On to the mains, I had pork belly, sage dumpling and fondant potato.  The meat was tender, the fondant well executed, the sage dumpling was not.  It was heavy, gooey, and, as can happen when too much sage is used, it tasted chemically.  Others had the fishcake with poached egg, quite tasty.

Pork Belly  with "that" dumpling

Fishcake with poached egg.
On the side we shared some chips, okay nothing special, and one of their scotch eggs - runny yolk, well seasoned- just like it should be!

A great Scotch egg.
The portions had been huge so there was probably no need for us to delve into the dessert menu, but dive in we did.  A portion of sticky toffee pudding was rich and sweet, it could have fed four easily.  The rhubarb and apple crumble was less successful. It must be said there was no scrimping on the crumble, it fell down on the fruit - there just wasn't enough of it.

I really wanted to love The Ship, it has a reputation for being one of the best places to eat in London.  Sadly, other than the pigeon, most of what we ate was not much above your average pub grub.  Bearing in mind that the prices are the same as somewhere like Quo Vadis which is receiving plaudits all round at the moment, that is a little disappointing.  And that sage dumpling, well the less said about that the better...
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