★★★★ | The Jones Family Kitchen, London
The best Sunday Roast deal in Central London, and perhaps in all of London, can be found at The Jones Family Kitchen and The Jones Family Project. But first things first.
The Jones Family is two separate restaurants. The Project is in Shoreditch and The Kitchen is in Belgravia. The roast is luckily served in both places.
For a mere £18.00 for two courses, or £25 for three courses – the offer is amazing. For your money you get a schooner of beer or a glass of house wine, a choice of starter (Soup, Smoked Salmon or Whipped Goats’ Cheese), the choice of Roast (Chicken, and of course Beef, or the vegetarian option of Nut Roast), and the dessert options of Gelato & Sorbet, Anna’s Brownie, or Amalfi Lemon Tart.
A friend from NYC and I drifted in for a late Sunday lunch (3:00 p.m.) at the Kitchen (Victoria) in the recently renovated historic and hidden enclave that is the Eccleston Yards, a short walk to Victoria Station and an even shorter walk to the bus station. Luckily the location in the yards makes the bus station and the throngs of rolling suitcase tourists seem far away. We were greeted by the fabulous Olivia, who remembered me from my visit to The Project (Shoreditch – remember?) a few weeks before. She showed us to our elegant table in the back section of the restaurant which can only be described as industrial meets contemporary. With floor to ceiling windows overlooking the yards, there is plenty of light and character in the place.
Now to the food. My starter of choice, the soup, turned out to be pumpkin – I really love pumpkin in any shape or form. And their pumpkin soup, very seasonal, was just divine. Thick but not too much, a bit puree-ey, served in an earth tone bowl, and just about perfect! My friend went for the Salmon starter – which came with pickles and sourdough, served on a bed of rocket lettuce and accompanied with tomatoes and peppers – nothing to rave about but good enough. However, when we saw, and tasted, the Roast – boy were we raving.
Talk about an abundance of food. The portion was enormous! The Yorkshire pudding just about took half the plate (see photo), and it was warm and baked to absolute perfection. And the beef was superb. I asked for mine well done – and it was! Topped with a luscious BBQ sauce (and smelling delicious), the dish included roast potatoes, honey roast parsnips and carrots, greens, cabbage, broccolini, and some mash – we both thought Thanksgiving had arrived early at our table as these types of portions are served at Thanksgiving dinners. Needless to say, my friend could not finish his though I am happy to report I ate everything on my plate, and it was absolutely delicious.
Dessert really had to be done, and I was very satisfied with my choice of the Amalfi Lemon Tart with créme fraiche. Small, yet deliciously sweet, and I enjoyed it. My lunch companion was semi-happy with his Anna’s Brownie. Nice tasting sorbet and the chunks of brownie were good but the bed of rice pudding had no taste and was not really necessary. He did, however, have an amazing Bloody Mary (for an extra £8), while I thought their coffee was just right. Mimosa’s are also £8 extra, or perhaps an Aperol Spritz (£7.50) or a Lost Negroni (£10). I had decided to have the Sangria Sunshine, which was white, and included Soave, orange and peach, and was just so refreshing, and my friend also had to have one! It was actually hard to choose a cocktail as there were so so many choices on the menu.
Everything was just about perfect about our lunch, except for the service. It started out very very good, but since we had arrived at the near end of the Sunday lunchtime, as the time went on we noticed most of the wait staff tucking into their own Sunday Roast in the corner, which left one girl on the floor to wait on the quite a few tables finishing their meals.
Needless to say, our dessert took quite some time to be delivered, while a table of 8 which sat down after us received their dessert much much quicker. But this is a minor quibble to a restaurant that’s got pretty much everything going for it; location (either Belgravia or Shoreditch), great value, and excellent food. Thumbs up to the Jones Family – think they will adopt me?
The Jones Family Kitchen:
Noon – midnight
Serving lunch: noon – 4.00pm
Serving our pre-theatre menu: 5.00pm – 6.15pm
Serving dinner: 6.00pm – 10.30pm
Noon – 8.00pm
Serving roasts and other dishes: noon – 6.00pm
Monday – Saturday
11.00am – midnight
Serving brunch & lunch: 11.00am – 4.00pm
evening & bar snacks: 5.00pm – 10.30pm
11 am – 8 pm
Serving roasts and other dishes: noon – 6.00pm
Tim Baros writes film and theatre articles/ reviews for Pride Life and The American magazines and websites, as well as for Hereisthecity.com, Blu-RayDefinition.com and TheGayUK.com. He has also written for In Touch and TNT Magazines, SquareMile.com and LatinoLife.co.uk. He is a voting member for the UK Regional Critics Circle and the Gay & Lesbian Entertainment Critics Association (GALECA – of which he is the UK representative). In addition, he has produced and directed two films: The Shirt and Rex Melville Desire: The Musical.