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Sunday 21 October 2012

Gastro Gem: The Elk in the Woods...

So I thought I might mix it up a little this weekend and spent my Saturday sheltered from the horrid rain in a warm, cosy haze of everything exciting and happy, surrounded by yard upon yard of frothy white fabric and coo'ing like a true girl....any guesses where I was? Wedding dress shopping of course! 

Don't get too excited not for a mini mouse wedding....not quite there yet but for my uni bestie Fran instead! It was a brand new experience for me which weirdly made me feel quite nervous as I didn't know what to expect....however after five minutes of flicking through meringues, fishtails, slinky numbers and lots of lace - I felt right at home! That was even before the dress trying began....we were like little princesses with the best dressing up box ever!

I never realised quite how tricky picking a dress could be, usually my routine goes....pick about twenty things to try, love nearly all of them, narrow them down with my sensible head and then buy five things more than I really should! BUT wedding dress shopping is totally find yourself being very critical, sensible and tough to impress! Typically we didn't find anything 'WOW enough' as we kept saying, so the search continues...sadly we weren't offered a glass of champagne or the process may have turned out very differently...however having said that for the final appointment after our pit stop the bride, mother of the bride and I were perhaps slightly softened by a bottle of wine!

Even though I was only observing and commenting, it really was seriously thirst / hunger inducing work! Appointment one down, we decided to make a much needed refuel at
The Elk in the Woods. Located conveniently 10 minutes from Angel tube on Camden Passage amidst vintage shopping heaven and right across from our next appointment...we settled in for a couple of hours rest!

Firstly the interior is my absolute heaven....wood panelled walls, battered scratched chunky wooden tables, deer antlers adorning the walls, mismatched vintage mirror features and the most scrumptious aroma of burgers and roast dinners that it could convert any vegetarian! 

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I literally felt as if I had stumbled across a cosy log cabin in a deserted woods as soon as I walked in - that may have been hangover induced but I was certainly sold upon arrival!

So on to the food, this was my total nightmare of a menu - it was as if the chefs had read my mind and concocted a list of all my favourite foods! Result...immense pressure to avoid food envy! Take note - definitely somewhere to go back to for dinner and cocktails, the small plates to share sounded divine with the likes of sweetcorn and smoked paprika cream with grilled halloumi and toasted ciabatta or Hungarian chorizo and pancetta stew with paprika and roasted pepper; and to wash that down I would love to try practically all of the cocktails especially Watermelon Tears - Gin, Watermelon and Fresh Cherry finished with Prosecco - YUMBO! And not only right up there on my dinner to-do list, this is now number one on my brunch list too...who could resist duck egg with asparagus, sausage and toast dippers or pancakes with baked cinnamon pears, goats cheese yogurt and maple syrup....see what I mean! 

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However we were there at 3pm so bridey and I opted for the r
are breed lamb burger in tortano roll with grilled courgette and mint jelly and chips...super flavoursome (top points for the mint jelly), cooked to perfection (pink in the middle) and crispy, fluffy chips...delicious! 

Mother of the bride went for char-grilled chicken and bacon, mayonnaise, baby gherkin, greens and tomato in ciabatta - it was safe to report from the food induced momentary silence amongst us that we were all very happy campers indeed! 

The only downside would be the staff, they left us standing at the bar when we arrived (literally like we were invisible) and generally weren't overly friendly - more like busy and preoccupied, even sometimes on the verge of being a little rude, but maybe it was an off day! A slight shame as they were doing so well but with food and atmosphere this spot on who needs friendly...take your own friends instead! Fear not I'll be popping back for brunch very soon and I'll give them another go...!

39 Camden Passage
N1 8EA
020 7226 3535

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