Walking past the outdoor seating area, with blankets carefully draped over the chairs, we pushed open the huge doors and stepped into No.1 Duke St.
We did consider the possibility of eating outdoors. Firstly because it was a really sunny day, and secondly because we knew it was going to be a raucous lunch.
But upon entering this new Richmond independent bar we couldn’t help but be awed by the warehouse chic interior as well. And considering the sun wasn’t particularly warming we settled for a well positioned window table, large enough to accommodate myself and Mr London Mum, along with his parents and one very hungry toddler!
With a coat stand near by and lots of space to park the pram (although we decided to close it and stand it up against the wall) it was a very comfortable area for our long leisurely lunch.
One of my favourite things about No.1 is actually the room each table is allocated. You don’t feel crammed in, and because the building is so large (with an upstairs as well accessible by lift if needs be) they are able to spread table and seating areas out.
You have the option of a variety of places to settle. Fancy an armchair by the open fire with your pooch? Not a problem. Fancy an intimate table for two? Or propping yourself up at the bar? Or how about settling down in the games room or a dining booth?
^^ Custom made table football without the need of £1.00 coins to play! Happy customers…
There are even central tables where you can read the latest papers while nursing a few drinks if you so wish. They basically have tables and seats to suit everyone. It means wherever you choose to place yourself you are comfortable, and that makes No.1 Duke St. one of the most relaxed dining atmospheres I’ve ever encountered.
Little London demanded a glass of milk pretty much as soon as we sat down, so we felt it was only appropriate we all ordered our drink of choice too.
I have a bit of a love affair with rum, so the pineapple and sage mojito was calling me in. It was freshly made at the bar and passed around the table for everyone to try because it was exceptional. So fresh, delicious and easy to drink.
With the other drinks arriving; a bloody Mary with it’s own homemade spice mix, a hot peanut butter rum (that was beyond smooth and beautifully concocted) and a pear and ginger hot toddy (also spectacular) complete with a little flower we all supped our cocktails until they were drained.
This is the place to go for cocktails of the best kind. With a great drinks menu featuring classics with a special twist often featuring delicious infusions, housemade syrups and sherbets you know there’s not one drink you could possibly be disappointed at. I would be more than happy to put that theory to the test!
But if drinking isn’t your thing, don’t fret because they also know how to cook at No.1 Duke St. as well. With an extensive menu offering light snacks to full on meals you’ll find something that’ll whet your appetite.
‘Grandpa’ decided on a hearty housemade shepherds pie with pumpkin and winter dale shaw cheddar along with a side order of garlic green beans.
But not wanting to miss out on the delicious sounding sharing plates, Mr London Mum, myself and ‘Grandma’ decided to mass order and share.
So out came a large crispy prosciutto, candied beets and roast cauliflower salad…
the highly popular truffle macaroni cheese…
a plate of smoked haddock and spinach fishcakes, crispy peppered squid, mini honey sausages…
and miso salmon and pickled ginger grilled skewers served on an artisan flat bread.
Every plate was cleared, devoured and enjoyed. Absolutely nothing was left after the three of us tucked in and demolished the lot.
The sausages were so succulent, while the squid was coated in the perfect batter giving it a crisp texture. The salmon was beyond beautiful and a great meal in itself (something for me to note next time I go in), the fishcakes came with a delicious creme fraiche tartar, the truffle macaroni was luckily kept to the right side of me therefore meaning I got to eat majority of it 😉 and the salad was really enjoyed and a welcome lightness that cut through the meal.
It was a great way for us to try a selection of what was on offer, and really test out the quality of the food.
The ingredients are obviously of an extremely high standard, and everything is cooked from scratch meaning it all just arrived at our table in perfect form.
With meals for little people also available, Little London tucked into his mini burger and house fries.
Being a fussy child it can be a bit hit or miss when we order him food, but luckily he seemed very happy with this choice, and ate the meat and scoffed the chips across the course of our meal (but as always he left any form of vegetable-typical!).
After finishing our main meals and wiping the glutton looks off our faces…
we couldn’t help but take a peak at the dessert menu.
With just Mr London Mum and myself able to
squeeze force a bit more in, we decided to share a maple banana toffee crumble with banana ice-cream.
You know it’s good when you fight for majority of it!
Little London’s meal came with the option of a fruit or ice-cream dessert. And seeing as we were spoiling ourselves we let him enjoy some sweet goodness too and he gleefully enjoyed every bite of his ice-cream.
No.1 Duke St. is without a doubt one of the most inclusive places I’ve been to. The huge space means everyone is able to find a corner that creates the atmosphere they’re after. I’d be just as happy bringing my Son here for a Mummy meet up as I would donning my heels and lipstick for a gossipy catch up with the girls. It’s everything you’d want from a new bar restaurant, and a joy to visit.
Richmond have something very special on their doorsteps!
(Disclosure: Complimentary meal)