The Drapers Arms is a pub situated in a quiet residential street in Islington. As we pulled up outside it looked beautiful; the the sort of quintessentially British pub that you could only dream about having as your local. As I’d heard many a good thing about the food I decided to take my parents along for a spot of dinner.
Inside was equally as charming; we were seated in the dining room which had a slight 1950′s village hall feel to it – in a good way.
Some thickly sliced bread and unsalted butter (there was at least salt on the table) got things off to a pleasant and hearty start.
The menu was presented on a single piece of paper and it all sounded appealing; turkey and ham pie, grilled bavette, Cumberland sausages with bashed neeps – ooh errr yes please. After a recommendation from our waiter, we decided to skip starters and opted instead to share two of the grilled forerib chops served with chips, watercress and horseradish sauce (£55 each).
Wow, the ribs were bloomin’ huge – I’ve never seen a bit of beef so big. The flavour of the meat was utterly phenomenal, especially the bits closer to the bone which tasted intensely…meaty. One of the chops was slightly rarer than the other (we’d requested medium rare) making it slightly difficult to cut through the thicker parts, but it was still heavenly to eat.
The thick cut chips were crisp, crunchy and well seasoned; I just could have done with a few more of them. The accompanying horseradish was great; creamy and slightly spicy but I would have loved the option of some other sauces too – a bearnaise or peppercorn perhaps.
After suffering from the forerib chop sweats my attention quickly diverted to pudding. The apple and cinnamon crumble with Christmas pudding ice cream (£6.50) was as good a crumble as you’ll find anywhere, with the sweetest and crunchiest of crumble toppings. The meringue with lemon curd and blackcurrants (£6.50) had the perfect balance between sweet and sharp but the meringue sadly lacked the chew I usually adore so much.
The chocolate, caramel and peanut tart with créme fraiche (£6.50) was a delicious blend of flavours but it could have done with slightly less chocolate and lots more caramel – very tasty indeed though.
We had a thoroughly enjoyable evening at The Drapers Arms; it felt like we’d found a little gem. Even on a sleepy post New Years Eve Thursday evening the atmosphere was still wonderful and cosy. Throw in tasty home cooked food and friendly, efficient service and you’ve got yourself a rather lovely pub.