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310 Portobello Road, Notting Hill, London W10 5TA
Now Closed :-(
I was looking on the net for a place where a group of us could have a ‘table roast’ (somewhere that serves the joint of meat at the table) and found The Fat Badger. I made the reservation online, which was an easy process.
There were nine of us in total, so a fairly large group, and there was plenty of room at the table. It was nicely laid out and in front of a window, which normally would have been fantastic but there were no blinds or curtains and it was a sunny day. That meant that those of us facing the window had to squint to see anything, and we were hot – thankfully, the barman opened the window to help us cool down. Unfortunately, there were no tables away from the windows that could accommodate all of us so we couldn’t move.
Once we settled down the food came out, and all of us had massive smiles on our faces at the sight of it! Three huge white porcelain platters were taken to our tables and placed onto metal stands (we’d wondered what they were for!). One platter was the beef (already sliced), one contained roasted potatoes and roasted veg, and the third contained cauliflower and yorkshire puddings. The beef was slightly pink in the middle and good quality, with plenty to go around for all nine of us. We initially thought we would have a joint of beef carved at the table, but to be fair we weren’t disappointed as it was so good. The roast potatoes were excellent – just the right amount of crispiness; in fact, someone commented that they were the best roast potatoes they’d ever eaten from a pub! The other roasted vegetables were really tasty, cooked with sprigs of thyme. The cauliflower was good, not over cooked, and the yorkshire puddings were just the right for me, crisp and quite light. There were jugs of gravy, so we could have as much or as little as we liked (this is important to me as a good roast can be ruined by too little gravy!).
If my memory serves me correctly I had the house wine and found it to be enjoyable.
The staff were all friendly and helpful, and were more than happy to help us present a surprise birthday cake to one of the party.
The place itself was nicely decorated (if you look closely at the patterned wallpaper you will see unusual pictures of highway men etc) and had a nice feel to it.
Overall, the whole experience was a positive one – the food was fantastic, the staff were helpful and accommodating, and the pub was comfortable and relaxing (a good mix of traditional and modern). The only downside for me was some of us facing a sunny window with no shades; the weather was of course not in the pub’s control, but it would have been nice if there was some kind of shade on the window for sunny days. Despite this we had a great time and I would definitely visit again. Greatly recommended!