Sometimes you just have so much fun with a bunch of homies that the food takes the backstage. I came home after a night out with the “quartet of crazy bunchers” and while I was still 80% sober, I don’t remember much about Prawn on the Lawn. Since then, I’ve asked the other members of the dinner party what they remember from PotL (apart from the awesome name) but all of us agree that it was “delicious” but with few other recommendations. At least I’m pretty sure we didn’t perform that many faux pas (luckily Grant saved his accidental “yelling at the waitstaff” moment for later*) and am *fairly* confident that we could go back for more delicious seafood!
An introduction: PotL is actually a fish monger with a few bar stools upstairs and 4 tables in the basement. The great thing is that it believes in ethically sourced, sustainable seafood (so we can eat all that deliciousness from our high horse). The downside-it only serves cold food. On the chilly winter night we visited (after getting lost in the freezing, blustery wind), the hot food element was definitely missed!
To start: Grant had a nudge card which means that we were entitled to 2 shots of the Bloody Mary Gazpacho with an oyster shooter. Rich, creamy and redolent of the sea, this set a perfect scene for our dinner. It also meant that Grant decided to only have cocktails with oyster shooters for the rest of the night (I mean, it was very economical not having to order more oysters I suppose?)- this was no sacrifice as both the Gazpacho and the dirty oyster martini were pretty tasty and well concocted. The rest of us went for incredibly boring drinks like sherry and gin & tonics (sadly no free oysters).
The Food: Well, we decided pretty early on that we couldn’t live without hot food that night so plotted to go to Bird for 2nd dinner (yep, that’s how the Boozy Bunch roll). Having got that dilemma out of the way, we shared a few of the cold plates: The mackerel pate with soda bread, salmon sashimi with crispy vermicelli, a buratta, crab som tum, some squid and 1/2 pint of shrimps. All the dishes were tasty, fresh and well balanced, with my favourites being the crab som tum and the salmon sashimi.
What they did really well at PotL was that the food really showcased the freshness of the ingredients- the simple dishes were just adventurous enough not to be boring and really put their fantastic produce in the spotlight. It wasn’t hugely expensive** and I’d happily go back for more seafood- perhaps when it’s much warmer and the lack of hot food would not be an issue (in their defence, they did have a chorizo and mussels stew but we were lured away by fried chicken and chips). I do love a bit of seafood and it’s hard to find top quality stuff in London without dropping a bomb so I’m super happy we gave this place a whirl.
Price: To fill me up properly? Probably about £50 per person with a couple glasses of sherry.
*I’m really sorry, lovely waiter from Bird, we love you guys really, but it’s a story for another day.
**Having said that, I could easily eat 3 dishes on my own- they recommend around 2-3 each, so it does add up. I won’t put this down as an “everyday restaurant”.
Prawn on the Lawn
220 St. Paul’s Road, N1 2LL