I have often walked past the Northbank restaurant on my way home at night. It sits alone, away from the crazy hustle and bustle of the nearby St Pauls and Bank and my curiosity was aroused enough to stop and take a moment to peer through its windows, wondering what was hidden by the low lighting and darkly designed interior.
As you can imagine, when an invitation came through to dine at this mysterious establishment, I was eager to satisfy my curiosity. Before I even entered the restaurant I took out my camera, the view was spectacular and I had to capture it.
Once inside, there was a champagne reception at the bar where I met some wonderful fellow PA’s and re-connected with the hosts; the corporate hospitality company Villiers and also the PA Club. We were also privileged to meet a very welcoming Christian Butler who founded and created Northbank almost ten years ago.
We then took our places in our own semi-private space, a great setting with a rather unique backdrop of the river and its twinkly lights. We also were privy to some very unique London themed wall paper.
We were given options from the very latest Autumn menu personally created by Head chef John Harrison, who sources the freshest ingredients to produce modern British food.
My favourite photo of the night was the one I took of the bread rolls, partly because I have such a great memory of devouring them. They arrived at our table fresh, warm and accompanied by something a little bit special,... bacon butter. If you go to the Northbank, I implore you, these are something you should really try.
The first course arrived which I was very much looking forward to, especially as this restaurant promotes its cornish influence and fresh fish, I chose pickled mackerel with horseradish and beetroot slaw. The mackerel was lean and full of flavour and the perfect portion size, leaving me wanting more.
I then chose the slow cooked pork belly with maple glazed parsnips and bacon jus which was divine, the pork was cooked to perfection. It was definitely the best kind of comfort food and very much a hearty main dish. The succulent bacon lardons were a welcome addition that accompanied the jus.
I then went for the West Coombe cheddar plate with celery, water crackers and fig chutney. Now, this was a little disappointing as the cheddar wasn’t particularly flavoursome. This could definitely be improved by either selecting a different kind of cheddar, one of my favourites being the nutty Godminster vintage organic cheddar, or choosing two complementing cheeses to give some variety.
Luckily a lovely lady I’d met, Emma, offered up her apple and damson fruit crumble with clotted cream ice cream, before she’d even tried it. I immediately had food envy, it tasted heavenly, particularly on a cold and wintery night, it was a delicious dessert and beautifully served.
The Northbank restaurant really is a hidden gem and I feel fortunate that I can now add it to my go to list of venues in the city. I know if I sent anyone here, I would be reassured that they would be in excellent hands on all counts.
There is also a summer terrace which I hear is spectacular, I look forward to returning when it's open and in full swing!
1 Paul's Walk,
For reservations call: +44 (0) 207 329 9299