I had a brilliant dinner last night. In a furniture shop. Naturally. It was at Ropewalk Bar & Dining Room which is the latest venture by the team from the ever talented, ever expanding and ever so tasty Disappearing Dining Club. Tucked along the railway arches of Maltby Street, SE1, you'll find this little treasure situated within the delightful labyrinth of the Lassco warehouse (architectural, antique and furniture salvage specialists) on Ropewalk. I did a blog feature on the wine emporium at 40 Maltby Street several years ago, when Maltby Street was still relatively undiscovered, and now it's exploded into one of the most exciting and intriguing foodie destinations in town, offering food and drink delicacies from every far flung corner of the globe. But that's mostly by day. Whereas the Ropewalk Bar & Dining Room is the place to go, both day... and night.
I met up with my friend Jenny, and being the grim and rainy old April evening it was, walking into Ropewalk was especially cosy and inviting as we made our way into the candle-lit bar hidden behind retro signs, antique lamps, dusty old boxes and a partially-closed curtain. It was a bit like drinking creative cocktail concoctions in Dickens' Old Curiosity Shop. And said cocktails were blindingly good, I must say!
After our cocktail and catch up moment, we made our way into the Eisenhower Room for dinner. Another exquisite room filled to the rafters with vintage lights, old mirrors, framed-prints and curious bric-a-brac (and all for sale). We took our seats at a long, antique communal table, ordered a very nice bottle of Malbec and perused the menu. The ingredients are sourced locally, some very locally in fact, as in bread from St John's and cheese from Neals Yard just skipping distance away on Maltby Street. To give you an idea of the delights on offer, check out the menu below:
Potato & Roast Garlic Soup
Curried Crab Salad with Pickled Cucumber & Toasted Sourdough
Smoked Duck & Celeriac Remoulade
* * *
Spiced Polenta Fritters with Chickpea & Aubergine Ragout and Mint Yoghurt
Smoked Haddock with a Welsh Rarebit Crust, Crushed Potatoes & Salmon Caviar Beurre Blanc
Roast Rump of Lamb with Snail, Garlic & Lemon Quinoa Risotto and Green Bean & Truffle Salad
* * *
Chocolate Brownie, Salt Caramel & Coconut Ice Cream
Lemon & Blueberry Mess
Three Great British Cheeses
For our starter, Jenny and I both opted for the crab salad which we devoured. It was really creamy with a subtle hint of curry and went perfectly with the pickled cucumber. For the main course, Jenny had the lamb which looked amazing and barely touched the sides, so I think she liked it! Meanwhile, I went for the haddock which was cooked beautifully and I just loved the Welsh Rarebit crust. We finished off with the brownie and cheeses, both of which disappeared without a trace. I think it is safe to say we both enjoyed every morsel of our meal. Oh, and not forgetting the delicious glass of French Lillet wine we were given as an aperitif with a twist of lemon peel. I'm definitely going to be investing in a few bottles of that this summer.
Being a mum, my nights on the town aren't as frequent as they once were, so it was a real treat to spend an evening out which was thoroughly enjoyable from beginning to end. Jerome and his team at Ropewalk Bar & Dining Room looked after us brilliantly and we went home full, happy and a tiny bit tipsy. Which is just how it should be. It certainly won't be my last visit, and if you haven't been already, I highly encourage you to try it out for yourself. Booking is essential and there's only one sitting a night, so you can relax, enjoy the excellent grub and ambience without getting turfed out after a couple of hours. Which is again, just how it should be. Thanks Team DDC. You've done it again!
Miss Immy was a guest at Ropewalk
Ropewalk Bar & Dining Room
41 Maltby Street
London SE1 3PA
020 3793 0202
Open for Drinks, Lunch, Dinner & Bar Snacks
Thursday & Friday 5pm - 10pm
Saturday 12pm - 10pm
Sunday 12pm - 5pm
Two Courses £28/Three Courses £32
Private dining available for up to 12 guests
Nearest stations: London Bridge or Bermondsey