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Friday, 29 October 2010

Blind Tiger, Battersea

Arrivals are scrutinised through an anonymous door's sliding grille. Pass the test (feel free to dress up as Spats Colombo or Sugar Kawalczyk although, as nobody else has bothered, reservations will presumably swing it) and enter Blind Tiger a semi-clandestine Roaring Twenties experience; that's as in Prohibition, the era when ‘blind tiger’ was code for an American speakeasy. In this candle-lit honytonk parlour cocktails, chow and chin-wagging are the thing. Lemongrass and lychee daiquiri, rhubarb and honey Bellini and Georgia mint julep - from a list of 'prescriptions' contained in gold envelopes handed to guests - live up to their raffish surroundings and an interesting selection of Stateside beers includes Kelham Island Pale Rider. Bistro-gastro best describes the generously apportioned food: with starters and franglais puds from £5 and mains of pork loin in pancetta with a mustard sauce, artichoke, runner beans and new potatoes (£14.95); pan-fried halibut, samphire, radicchio and gamey-good pheasant (complete with shot) on creamed mash all well received, murmerings of 'too many things on the plate' aside. There’s live juke joint music on Wednesdays, rat pack swing on Thursdays and Sunday tea parties with illicit hooch. At weekends, the venue reverts to being an annexe of Lost Society but for an alternative week night jaunt or a novel Christmas party, this Tiger lost in the back woods of Battersea could turn out to be a blinding idea.

697A Wandsworth Road SW8 7652 6526
(adapted from my review for Square Meal)