Fallow is a restaurant where you can indulge without the guilt, as in their brightly-lit open kitchen, they have created virtuous gourmet. Enjoy a tasty mushroom parfait which will make you wonder if you will ever desire foie gras again. Savage over a cod’s head in mind-blowing sriracha hot sauce. Effortlessly stylish young Londoners are flocking to this vibrant soft industrial-styled room to celebrate this creation as well as to be serenaded by charismatic, switched on and eager to please front of house staff. Did we also mentioned it is great value and dog-friendly too?
What is the food like?
Virtuous gourmet. There is so much we shouldn’t be eating today because of ethical, environmental and health reasons. Although, we are a believer of it, it is difficult to sustain such a diet, especially if you love food. Thankfully, the two geniuses behind Fallow Restaurant have solved it and allowed us to atone our sins.
Chef Jack Croft and Will Murray together with Anna Williams, who have all worked with Heston Blumenthal formerly, have created delicious creative dishes from sustainable produce. In the spirit of veganism and vegetarianism, they have produced a tasty mushroom parfait served with freshly toasted home-made sourdough which made us wonder if we will ever desire foie gras again. They have also introduced us to the mouth-watering corn ribs, a godsend addition to our snack repertoire made from sweetcorn and kombu (seaweed) seasoning.
Fallow championed using ingredients that have been seen as a by-product of the industry. Their signature dish of Cod’s head in Sriracha butter sauce uses cod heads that until recently have been throw back into the ocean. They have sold over 9,000 plates of them at time of writing.
All these delivered with no compromise on taste and flavours, which is still the number one priority here. For us, this is the sustainable way to live to enjoy delicious food.
How is the drinks selection?
Vetted Europeans only. The selective wine menu only has wine from European producers. There are 35 choices of white and 40 choices of red with one of each from England. Prices range from £34 for a bottle of Fallow (house) wine to £480 for a bottle of 2016 Sassicaia from Tenuta San Guido in Tuscany.
The cocktails and mocktails are punchy. There isn’t much on the menu, but the gorgeous bartender will be more than happy to shake or stir up your drink of choice.
What is the place like?
Vibrant. The brightly-lit open kitchen takes centre stage at Fallow. The organised chaos orchestrated by the 10 kitchen staff filled the soft industrial-styled room with passion for food and energy. The other half of the room is dimly-lit with dark cement floor and upside-down garden planters on the ceiling.
The 150 covers are seated on round marble tables or squarish dark wood tables for lovebirds with black wood chairs. There are also two wrap-around marble-topped bar-styled seating areas. One at the bar and another facing the open kitchen, where if you are lucky, you will catch the two chefs behind Fallow displaying their craft.
Who are the patrons?
Effortlessly stylish young adults calling London town their home. Congregating to celebrate the marvel of the city and appreciating the fabulous food and drinks on offer. Equally popular with more seasoned Londoners who are keeping up with the best London has to offer.
How was the service?
Flawless. The front of house staff were charismatic, switched on and eager to please. They were friendly and knowledgeable about the menu and the Fallow ethos. Service was prompt. Wine was decanted. Starters arrived within a blink from taking our orders. Likewise for following transitions to mains and desserts. Special request to visit their little in-house mushroom farm was received with joy. Feeling welcomed is an understatement here.
Is it child friendly?
Children are welcome, but we didn’t see any baby changing facilities and space for prams are limited. There is a children menu but as food from the main menu are served in the middle for sharing, it is easy to accommodate for smaller (or larger) appetites.
Is it dog friendly?
Yes, canine friends are more than welcome inside the restaurant as well as at the outdoor seatings.
Yes. The restaurant charges a discretionary service charge of 13.5%.
See below for what my dining companions and I indulged in for this review in December 2021 (prices quoted include VAT):
Wine & cocktails
2016 Amarone della Valpolicella Classico, Lena di Mezzo, Monte del Frà (Recommend)
A medium bodied red from Veneto Italy. High alcohol content of 15.5%. Hint of orange, strawberry and peach on the nose. Medium dry to sweet on the palate, with good amount of tannin to give it an edge. £124++
No. 3 Gin & Tonic (Recommend)
Can’t go wrong with the good old G&T. Served with a gin of your choice and a selection of tonic. £14++
Heddon street highball (Recommend)
Light and refreshing aperitif. Singleton whisky served with sparkling soda, mint leaves and strips of apricot. £14++
Esher sour mocktail (Recommend)
Beetroot in a drink? A 1st for us. The earthy notes worked well with the light florality from the jasmine tea and bubbles from the tonic. £8++
Dragon punch (Recommend)
Another Chinese tea inspired mocktail. This uses dragon well tea (longjing), a type of green tea, sweeten with apricot juice, freshen-up with mint and spiced with a hint of black pepper. £8++
2009 Quinta de la Rosa Vintage Port (Strongly recommend)
Delicious deep red port matured for 18 months in oak barrels on the hills of Douro Valley in Porto, Portugal. Sweet intense blackcurrant on the nose and rich dark fruit on the palate. £14++
2016 Petit Guiraud Sauternes, Bordeaux (Recommend)
Sweet and rich wine made from 85% sémillon and 15% sauvignon blanc. Floral on the nose with a mild sweetness and a hint of citrus on the palate. £8++
Corn ribs, lime (Strongly recommend)
One of their bestseller. We have seen this popping up everywhere since it was popularised on TikTok by @spicednice in February 2021. Fallow has been serving these since November 2019 in their pop-ups before opening up permanently. The corn strips are deep fried and sprinkled with seasoning made by salted kombu (a type of seaweed), Old Bay seasoning, smoked paprika, smoked chilli flakes and salt.
Bite into these tasty strips and you will instantly understand why they are the bestsellers. It bursts with natural sweetness from the corn which was elated by the umami and salty sensation from the seasoning. It is a fantastic addition to the repertoire of snacks. £7.50++
Caramelised cauliflower croquetas (Recommend)
Cylinders of soft caramelised cauliflower topped with crispy deep-fried cauliflower leaves, a sprinkle of hard cheese and served with a rich black garlic mayo sauce. It was tasty but the texture of the inside was a touch claggy for perfection. £7++ serving of 2 pieces
Mushroom parfait, shiitake (Strongly recommend)
The star of the show and it is also vegan. If you are looking for an alternative to foie gras, they have created it here. The parfait made from a complex procedure using mushroom, tofu, brown butter, port, brandy, lemon and the list goes on. It is topped with shiitake and home-grown lion’s mane mushrooms (yamabushitake) and served on freshly toasted home-made sourdough.
It has an intense kick of umami and the same buttery smooth mouthfeel as you will get from foie gras. The creamy melt-in-your-mouth goodness is a must-try. £17++
Crab, artichoke, hazelnut (Do not recommend)
Long strips of fresh sour artichoke beautifully served with hazelnut and crab meat. The dish is light and energising, but we felt that the sweetness from the crab was over-shadowed by the sourness. One to forego for better options on the menu. £22++
Dairy cow burger, bacon, cheese (Recommend)
The classic burger made well. The glossy brioche roll, sourced from Paul Rhodes (paulrhodesbakery.co.uk), is wholesome and light. The diary cow meat patty was delicious and packed with flavours. The smoked mayo sauce, bacon and melted cheese makes it irresistible. £18++
Market fish, salsify, citrus sauce (Recommend)
A choice of halibut or turbot on the day of our visit. We chose the halibut. It was a touch overdone for our liking. The fennel-infused citrus sauce was spot-on – full, rich and tangy to enhance the natural sweetness of the halibut. Could do with some improvement on the presentation too. £35++
Duck, hen of the woods, celeriac (Recommend)
Duck breast was a touch overdone for our liking. But it was served with a rendition of Moroccan pastilla (filo pastry), which was the best part of the dish. It was crunchy and filled with deliciously flavoured duck offal. The celeriac purée was light and appetising. We are usually a big fan of hen of the woods mushroom, but it didn’t make much of an impression here. £38++
Dairy cow cuts
Ribeye on the bone (Strongly recommend)
Succulent, tender and full of flavours. This 850g of tomahawk steak was flawlessly sizzled to activate the intramuscular fat from the marbling to flavour the meat. It has a beautifully caramelised sear from perfectly basting it with brown and nutty butter. Beefy, smoky, juicy and moist.
Love this increasingly popular pre-cut sharing of steak, takes the stress away from having to cut them yourself. The horseradish was a touch airy for us, much prefer ones with a more direct kick. £10 per 100g. £85++
Pump Street chocolate crunch, coffee (Recommend)
Intense dark chocolate indulgence. It was dense and mean, worked beautifully with the creamy coffee ice cream. £12
Chelsea tart, caramelised whey (Strongly recommend)
The best of the three desserts we tried. Heavenly salted caramel, a perfectly sweet, condensed and salty concoction in a delicious crunchy tart. Well done to Head Pastry Chef Anna Williams. £12++
Rhubarb soufflé, cardamon, ginger (Recommend)
Light and fluffy, skilfully made. Generous portion with well-balanced flavours. We just wished it was chocolate (personal bias). £16++