Dining At One of Brentford's Oldest
The Weir offers good, homemade, hearty and plentiful food
The Weir must be in one of Brentford’s loveliest spots. Tucked away from the High Street overlooking the canal and the weir; there are tables and chairs in a landscaped garden where you can sit out when it's sunny. It has also got a bit of history as it’s Brentford’s oldest licensed premises, dating back to 1604, and the artist JWM Turner lived there in 1785.
Now it’s a gastro-pub – a boozer with a dining room, in this case a big glass conservatory where you can look out on the lovely garden when it’s too cold to sit outside, as it was when we went there.
But what’s the food like? We had the lunch on a wintry week day and I can report that it’s good, homemade, hearty and there’s plenty of it at a very reasonable price. You don’t have to be starving to eat here, but if you are you won’t be disappointed.
There’s a choice of five starters: soup of the day; Thai fish cakes; caprese salad; deep-fried squid; and shredded duck salad with a plum sauce, rocket, spring onions and cucumber. We went for the soup and the shredded duck.
My courgette, spinach and Stilton soup was lovely: a pretty shade of green, tasty and warming on a cold day. It was accompanied by two slices of tomato bread and would be fine on its own for a light lunch. My companion decalred his duck salad an ideal starter. The meat was juicy without any fattiness, the plum sauce satisfying with the rocket making a nicely balanced accompaniment.
For my main course I had mushroom stroganoff and was delighted that the mushrooms
were Chantrelles and not bog-standard button mushrooms. They were accompanied by sun
My companion had fried fillet of haddock which was beautifully presented, with the fish in
its golden London Pride beer batter lying on a bed of fat golden chips with mushy peas and
tartare sauce on the side. The batter was crisp and delicious and the fish moist and flaky.
The mushy peas had the right grainy texture and taste but the chips, although nicely fluffy
The main course menu changes fairly regularly and on the day we were there other dishes included potato, beetroot and spinach gnocchi; omelette and chips; and Cumberland sausages and Weir burger both with all the trimmings. There were also a couple of salads: haloumi with artichoke hearts, and roasted butternut squash with beetroot with goat’s cheese.
If we’d had room for desserts we could have chosen from sticky toffee pudding; chocolate and walnut brownie with ice cream; and lemon tart with marscapone cheese. Too much for us after a filling meal but one of these would make a nice, self-indulgent treat with a cup of tea or, if you really want to push the boat out, a small glass dessert wine.
We didn’t have wine with our meal but there’s a good wine list with prices starting at £18 a bottle.
Thanks to the current offer of a free starter or dessert with any any main course, the bill came to an amazingly low £28 which included two Diet Cokes and a pot of tea and service. But even at full price it would have been good value.
It’s taken me a long time to discover The Weir, which I regret, but I intend to make up for it in the future.
February 7, 2013