The Cow – W2 – a lesson in attention to detail by Maria Kuehn

Spankingly good oysters
Delicious bread
The perfect Kiev

The cow is a small, bustling, ever so slightly cramped pub and restaurant that has an upstairs dining room from which we were shooed away instantly; as if we could have had a table without booking in advance.

So we schlepped downstairs to find one table free. I’d heard a lot about The Cow and my dining companion had been before and knew of my love affair with oysters.

Good things come in small packages – that includes a menu in my book. For me, half a dozen of West Mersea rocks and for my friend, the chicken kiev. Some walnut bread and a carafe of rose duly ordered, I spent the next half hour drinking in the handsome plates coming out. Our neighbours had ordered rare steaks with a potato gratin that looked to die for. I had to ask – they said their meal was absolutely divine, the steaks done to perfection.

The bread duly arrived and here’s where I could tell that quality is at the forefront here. Delicious walnut bread and French, creamy butter were a delight to savour and when the oysters arrived, they smelled of the sea and were gobbled with gusto, a spoon of raspberry vinegar and a little tabasco helping them along. As for the kiev, the very best that I have had the pleasure of eating, was moist, juicy and with just the right smack of garlic. So often it’s overpowered and over cooked. Not a bit of it here. The creamy mash would have your cardiac surgeon running for the hills – delectable.

A good, quaffing chateau La Grave rose was a very pleasing drop and I really couldn’t fault any aspect of our meal.

Such quality doesn’t come cheap – a starter, a main, bread, salad and wine came to just under sixty quid including service. When you come face to face with such stunning standards, however, who gives a hoot.

The Cow
W2 5QH
020 7221 5400

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