Tootsies replacement offers good relaxed dining
Faced with a starving rower fresh from victory on the Thames, a teenager who had moved very little all day but still declared himself famished and a bare cupboard, there seemed nothing for it but to head into Chiswick for some sustenance.
Having been habituees of the old Tootsies, we were keen to find out how the new occupant, The Cabin, measured up.
We arrived promptly at 6pm and were pleased to see that times had moved on. Not only did we not need to take recourse to the crayons and colouring books within 10 seconds of arriving or have 22 visits to the downstairs loo as a source of entertainment, but the decor of years gone by had been replaced by modish brown tables and comfortable leather chairs.
Rower could barely wait to get hold of the wine list although there was a vague suspicion that this was not their first tipple of the day. We chose a bottle of Tarquino Malbec Mendoza from the "Rich and Interesting Reds" category in the wine list while teenager made do with a diet Coke. We were offered water: still, sparkling or Thames and the waitress did not falter when rower muttered something about having had enough Thames for one day.
For food, rower chose the steak Tartar with quails egg for his starter. The raw chopped steak arrived in a neat patty with little piles of cornichons, onions and parsley ready to mix in and extra mayonnaise, Tabasco and mustard were quickly summoned. After some rapid mixing, rower pronounced the dish ready and munched it with gusto. My 3 blackened tiger prawns with dipping sauce were similarly pleasant.
Mains consisted of a Cajun burger with no tomato (the waitress very efficiently enquired whether this meant tomato to one side or absent altogether- the latter option was gratefully accepted), lemon and honey glazed chicken and mussels. All 3 dishes came with chips. Teenager then finished off with the chocolate brownie Sundae and rower tackled the white chocolate cheesecake. The food was good honest fare: more Delia Smith than Heston Blumenthal and was exactly what we wanted.
The Cabin has obviously tapped into the Chiswick pschye: the restaurant was absolutely full within an hour and there were only 2 people under the age of 15 there. A long list of cocktails sounded tempting and could probably do with further investigation.
The bill came to £93.60 including service. And we were back out on Chiswick High Road at 8pm fully recharged for another evening of hung parliamentary chitchat on the TV.
May 8, 2010