Jar Kitchen (Covent Garden): where farm-to-fork concept feels like home

I can count on one hand the people I consider “my rock and anchor” and my cousin D is at the top of that list. I missed her birthday soiree this year as I was in the Philippines so to make up for it I promised to take her out to dinner at her restaurant of choice.
We’ve both heard good reviews about Jar Kitchen from peers
and foodies all over so when she picked this cosy restaurant along Drury Lane, it felt like a win-win for us both.

The café-cum-resto’s farm-to-fork concept is fairly apparent in the menu and its ambience. It cosy and cutesy and feels more like stepping into a barnyard kitchen prepped for a little intimate dinner rather than a restaurant in central London.

We kicked off the night with negronis which were rather more potent than I’d expected. Definitely a winner in my book.

For starters, D ordered the ox cheek and cheddar croquettes (£6). These balls of flavour were a winner. Crunchy, salty, and perfectly shaped, I had massive food envy but glad D had a really awesome dish.

I went for the fried squid with curry mayo (£8.5) served with a generous portion of minted peas. I liked this dish enough, but I’ve had better calamari before.

For mains, D opted for the pork neck with fennel, roast apricots and mustard seeds (£14). I had a little bit of it and thought the flavour was quite a fresh take on something seemingly hearty. The pork was juicy and the sweet, tangy apricot balanced the earthy jus and pungent fennel. 

I went fishy and ordered the seared monkfish with grilled baby artichoke (£15.5) which came with toasted spelt, samphire and white wine sauce. The cook on the monkfish was perfect and the seasoning was spot on. I’m a fan of artichoke and was slightly disappointed that mine went a bit mushy but the spelt was cooked the way I liked it and added a bit of texture.

Bellies sufficiently satisfied, we decided to share a dessert and went for the mini cinnamon sugared doughnuts with caramel cream (£6). Unfortunately, this was a let-down. The dough was quite pasty and didn’t sit well in our palates. The caramel tasted burnt, too.

Service was quite relaxed, if not a bit slow at times, but the staff were quite friendly and knowledgeable about their menu and sourced ingredients. Overall, it’s a decent enough place to catch up with friends and family and the homey ambience does it well. I may have had high expectations for the food but even though it was a bit of a hit and miss, it does taste like comfort, as if made by a really good cook at home.

We rounded up the night in Lab where we were treated to amazing cocktails (as always) and cheeky chocolate-coconut vodka shots because what’s a birthday dinner without shots, aye?

Jar Kitchen
176 Drury Lane, Covent Garden, London WC2B
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  1. 27th July 2015 / 11:57 am

    I had a really lovely meal there a few months ago. So not what you expect from somewhere right in Covent Garden.

    • 28th July 2015 / 10:26 am

      That's true! It's so un-touristy and quaint. =) They didn't have the pork belly you had which sounds lovely! x

  2. 27th July 2015 / 1:03 pm

    This looks like a place I'd like… Will make sure I check it out next time I'm around Soho!

    Sandra | Cake + Whisky

    • 28th July 2015 / 10:27 am

      Go for it, Sandra! They're still relatively new but I reckon w/ a bit more experience they'll be really really good!

  3. 28th July 2015 / 12:13 pm

    Looks like a nice enough place, and hopefully they'll only get better with time x

    Mehreen A | wrapyourlipsaroundthis.com

    • 28th July 2015 / 12:48 pm

      I hope it's just opening jitters! They do have a lovely concept and their cosy ambience is a welcome break from all the touristy spots in Covent Garden!

  4. 28th July 2015 / 4:52 pm

    I hadn't heard of Jar Kitchen but Covent Garden is crying out for good eateries so I'd definitely check it and its croquettes out!

    Suze | LuxuryColumnist

    • 30th July 2015 / 10:09 am

      It's quite a tiny space along Drury Lane and they've only opened up 4 months ago. Do give it a try, Suze. =)

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