Monday, 31 August 2015

The Chef's Table at Crocker's Folly.

Last week I was lucky enough to go to a foodie dinner at the Chef's Table at Crocker's Folly, a restaurant located in a beautiful Victorian Grade II listed building in St John's Wood, that was built in 1898 as a pub. Headed up by talented chef Damian Wawrzyniak, the dinner with Zomato consisted of a humongous 12 courses of pure indulgence. So, without further ado, let me tell you more...

Venison Pie at Crocker's Folly in London

We arrived at Crocker's Folly and started with a cocktail, I'm trying not to drink so much at the moment, and it was a Monday night, so I only had half of it and stayed away from the majority of the wine flight (I just had one small glass of white). The restaurant was absolutely beautiful, huge and opulent. It's full of grand marble (over 50 different types!) and huge fireplaces, with a saloon style bar. It would be the perfect place to while away an evening in the middle of winter!

Cut glass chandelier at Crocker's Folly in London

We started with Chicken skins and onion syrup. The chicken skin was crunchy and delicious yet delicate, it was a little like the chicken version of pork crackling. The onion syrup was surprisingly sweet, and I could have easily drunk more of it.

Chicken Skins and Onion Syrup at Crocker's Folly London

Next was raw lamb, this was one of my favourite dishes from the evening. Despite the first four courses being called 'snacks', they were quite large and filling and I'd class them more as standard starter portions. 

Raw lamb at Crocker's Folly London

Paired with the starters was a Lebanese Chardonnay Cuvee Des Papes from the Bekaa Valley, I really loved this wine and found it very drinkable.

Ksara Chardonnay Cuvee Des Papes from the Bekaa Valley in Lebanon at Crocker's Folly London

The Josper grilled brined cauliflower topped with caviar was sensational, I never thought I would eat such incredible cauliflower. I mean, it's just a vegetable? And a boring one at that. Cauliflower isn't supposed to make you want more. 

Josper grilled brined cauliflower topped with caviar at Crocker's Folly London

Our next dish was another favourite; New potato with herring and oat cake. I'd never had herring before, but I really enjoyed it. I didn't eat all of the potato as it was pretty huge, but the herring piled onto the oat cake was so good! You'll have to excuse the quality of the photos, the restaurant was insanely dark, and I was struggling with the low light shutter speed (I don't have the steadiest of hands...).

New potato with herring and oat cake at Crocker's Folly London

After our four 'snacks' I was already getting a little full, but we still had five main courses and three desserts to go (I know). The first two main courses I skipped, the only foods I don't eat are pink/red fish, and beetroot. The next two courses were salmon...and beetroot. Chef Damian explained how they prepare the Gravad Lax (salmon), which is sliced in front of the guests. 

Chef Damian at at Crocker's Folly London

You then had to go up and choose how much you wanted. I stayed sitting and thought it would be a good chance to let the starters go down before the next mains. I was given the second beetroot dish, and it was like a work of art! I did try a little but just couldn't stomach it. I don't know what it is about beetroot that my tastebuds just can't stand...I just find it a very earth strong flavour. 

Salt baked beetroot salad at Crocker's Folly London

Anyway, next up was the Venison pie with pickled root vegetables. This was definitely one of my favourites, however it was absolutely huge and a full sized pie! It arrived and my mouth just dropped. Obviously I ate it all though. It was way too good to leave any of it!

The next dish was nice....but just nice. Again it was massive, and I couldn't eat it all. Pearl barley with mussels. Because we were testing out new dishes for the winter menu, all of them were really heavy and hearty. We really could have done with smaller portions, as none of us could finish them all and it felt like such a waste to leave such amazing food.

Pearl barley with mussels at Crocker's Folly London

After the Pearl Barley we all went downstairs to the kitchen to see how the Josper Grill works. Rosie from A Little Lusciousness had a go at putting the steaks on and working out when they were the perfect medium rare.

Cooking steaks on the josper grill at Crocker's Folly London

Cooking steaks in the kitchen at Crocker's Folly London

We tucked in to the Porterhouse steak and skinny duck fat chips, all of us sticking out forks into the sharing platter and having a taste for ourselves. The steak was perfect.

Porterhouse steak at Crocker's Folly London

Sadly I had to leave just before dessert as I had to go and get my train home back to the countryside, it was already gone 10pm and it took me 40minutes to get back to Waterloo! I did manage to get a photo of the first dessert (Chocolate Sphere) before I rushed off though....

Chocolate sphere at at Crocker's Folly London

I had a wonderful evening at Crocker's Folly, the food was brilliant, and it was so great to see Suze and finally meet Rosie!

The Chef's Table at Crocker's Folly runs on a seasonal basis and is by invitation only, however you can inquire should you have an interest in attending. It's meant to showcase dishes that could make it to the new seasonal menu if guests shout enough about a certain dish. However a few signature dish favourites are already on the current menu, including the 7-day Cured Salmon Gravad Lax, Asparagus Risotto, and the incredible Porterhouse steak. I myself am really hoping that the raw lamb, herring, and venison pie make it onto the Winter Menu, they were definitely the stand out dishes for me!

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  1. These sound delicious - and with a Josper Grill in the Kitchens I'll be there in a flash!

  2. Oh wow, I'm soo hungry reading this!

  3. Wow! I can't believe how much food they gave you! I would have eaten you salmon for you...and probably drunk your wine ;)
    Lots of love,

    SilverSpoon London

  4. My eyes keep on being drawn to that mini pie! It looks fabulous

  5. What an evening it was, I thought my stomach might explode! I also missed the very last course, anyway your photos came out really well considering the lighting

    Suze | LuxuryColumnist

  6. This all looks delicious! The presentation is fantastic, I'm so jealous! Great post & review! Wish I were closer to be able to try it out! :)

  7. Aw, was SO fabulous to meet you lovely :) What a night it was, way too much food!! Was full for daaaays!

    Rosie xx

  8. Damian Wawrzyniak10/01/2017, 14:51

    Hey ladies!

    It was like year ago but I am now working on new version of Chicken Skin and Cauliflower dishes for new place which will be open soon in Hong Kong, again huge thanks for pop in to my Chefs Table and hopefully see you soon at my new place...fingers crossed!


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