- 2023 Highest New Entry
Hailed by The Guardian’s restaurant critic Grace Dent as “a benchmark of where pub dining is heading”, the Baring opened in August 2022 on the site of the former Poet pub. Totally refurbished in a clean, stripped-back London gastro-style, it’s a bright and airy space, elegantly furnished with stools at the bar for those who’d just like a drink and a snack.
If you need to be tempted to a table for a full meal, all you need to know is that the head chef here is Rob Tecwyn who used to run the kitchen at Fitzrovia’s fashionable Dabbous. He first met general manager Adam Symonds when both worked at Highgate’s Bull & Last.
They don’t shout too loud about what they’re doing, preferring to let the food do the talking. Keen to reflect a strong sustainable ethos, their menu puts the emphasis on seasonal ingredients, thoughtfully sourced, simply cooked and creatively plated.
You might start with a quail shish with garlic yoghurt and pul biber chilli; or pig cheek, cabbage, chorizo and chestnut, and follow that by tucking into a wild mallard with crushed swede and pickled walnut ketchup; or Cornish pollock, salsify and brussel tops.
Then finish on a warm almond financier with plums & cream or chocolate, olive oil, sea salt and macadamia, paired with your choice of dessert wine.
And on Sundays, traditional roasts come onto the menu. Choose from pork belly, beef sirloin or a grilled Normande beef rib for two.
True to its pub roots, the Baring also knows its beer, and you might find a locally-brewed Five Points ale, or something cutting edge from Burning Sky in Sussex or a wild-fermentation specialist like Suffolk’s Little Earth.
Wines are organically produced, and there’s a cocktail list with some imaginative offerings. Anyone for a Hogweed Martini?
A perfect all-rounder and worthy winner of the title of Highest New Entry 2023.