08 Aug Willsmere Station, Kew
Occupying a spot in the cosy Willsmere Village, Willsmere Station is an Middle Eastern-influenced all-day affair, at least from Thursday to Sunday. Out dinner starts off with lightly battered Eggplant Chips with spiced aioli, and Hickory smoked Cauliflower Florets, followed by some winter warmers for mains. Hunkar Begendi is a comforting dish of slow cooked lamb on a bed of smooth and luscious eggplant puree, and the Duck Stew is cooked with a sharp tomato sauce, coming with labneh and house flatbread to mop up all the sauces. We choose to complement these with a Spiced Pilav, studded with barberries, almonds, pistachios, lemon, mixed herbs, plus an option to top it with sardines or sous vide lamb shoulder.
Crunchy, thinner style House Made Waffle is matched up with slightly elastic Turkish ice cream, pistachio, white chocolate and apple crumble, cacao nibs and fruit, but the highlight is the Kunefe. A stretchy house blend of cheese is wrapped with crisp kadaif pastry, and accompanied by Turkish ice cream and syrup on the side. The slightly savoury cheese can be balanced with as much syrup as you’d care to add, and the ability to customise the sweetness of the dessert appeals to non-sweet tooths like me. Fortunately for all of us, the Kunefe is available to order both day and night.