When I ran across The Fryer’s Delight, I was actually on my way to Lamb’s Conduit Street, where a guidebook had suggested I might find some nice restaurants. Leaving aside why I stopped for fish & chips instead, let me say that “Lamb’s Conduit Street” is one of the coolest street names I’ve run across anywhere. It’s even better than Einbahnstrasse.
I returned on my final night in London, and found myself in a pub with the almost as interesting name of “The Perseverance.” The website gives no indication of how they chose the name, but I settled in for a cider – Kopparberg Swedish pear cider over ice – and perused the menu.
“Our menu is based on traditional pub fayre; it is home made, freshly prepared honest pub grub at reasonable prices,” claims the website. Note sure if anything in London seems reasonably priced on the lousy dollar these days, but I ordered leek and bacon soup and salmon-haddock fishcakes.
For some reason I was expecting a thick, creamy or potatoish soup with crumbled bacon. I was wrong but not disappointed. The soup was not too thick, definitely not creamy, and had real leek flavor without too much of anything else. Except bacon. There were good sized bits of thick smoky bacon in the soup. The cibatta and English butter made the prospect of a main course a little worrying.
The salmon and haddock fishcakes (with homemade tartar sauce) were served on some of the best greens I’d had in a week in London. The cakes themselves were full of good-sized chunks of both fishes and potatoes, too. Not spicy like a crabcake, but hardly bland. The salmon added interest to what might have been a too-predictable pub dish. Very satisfying. I’m glad I persevered.
Wow, that Pear cider sounds like it would be refreshing – any idea if it’s available over here in the States?
Indeed, I’m pretty sure you can buy the non-alcoholic version at your friendly neighborhood IKEA. The hard stuff can be found here and there, I think I bought some at Cellar Wines & Sprits (991 Mass Ave Cambridge), or you can check out this chowhound thread on the topic: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/459547