Review of 'Patio Restaurant (NOW CLOSED)'

I am a fan of Polish cuisine ever since I tried my first plate of dumplings when I lived in Winnipeg, Canada. True, they were the Ukrainian version but then moving on to Kielbasa (sausage) and borscht I grew to appreciate the Polish side more. Having said that, I still don't like their pickles (I prefer the dill kind rather than vinegar only). The food is simple with few, generally inexpensive, ingredients but makes you feel good…and often quite full!

I pass by the Patio Restaurant every day on my way to work and everything I have heard about it, including their claim to be the “best Polish food in London”, has been quite positive. So, on my birthday, I decided to give it a go.

The small interior is as if you are sitting in someone's house - pictures on the walls, no pretentious furnishings and complete with, when I visited, a piano. The owner is friendly as she came to greet us warmly and show us to our table near the door. We decided for forgo the a la carte menu and go with the three-course set menu (£16.95) as it had the dishes we came here for.

I started with the “hunter's stew” which my wife had told me about - A stew of cabbage, meet and a bit of sausage - Quite good but not exactly a flavour sensation, though I would not really expect it to be I did expect a bit more of a flavour hit from the sausage. My companion assured me that her red borsteh soup with meat dumplings was quite tasty.

Hunter's Stew

My main course was the pierogi (home made Polish dumplings). When asked what filling I wanted in my dumplings I requested a “mix” which consisted of, at least when I visited, one type filled with cabbage, another with a meat paste and another with cheese. I received about 12 of these, simply boiled garnished with dill and a small amount of garlic. The mains come with sides that consisted of fried potato slices, horse-radish flavoured boiled beetroot and a sweet apple/celery salad. The pierogi were wonderfully light and perfectly seasoned, surprisingly full of flavour. Of the sides I particularly liked the beetroot though my companion did not like the horse-radish nor the fact it was served warm. The potatoes were bland and nothing at all special.

Pierogi with sides

For desert we were offered the choice of ice cream, fruit or an apple pie, of which we agreed to the later - It was a disappointment as it was the type of apple pie that consists of a mushy apple and like something you might get frozen in a supermarket (though, I would have to assume, was homemade).

Apple Pie

The service was relaxed but very friendly and the ambience was quiet and peaceful though I have been told when busy it is crowded and very noisy. Being a Wednesday there were only about 3 or 4 groups eating.

A few years ago I visited Tatra Restaurant just down the road. Patio certainly is much more home-style Polish cuisine though Tatra is quite a bit more refined both in decor but also in their dishes. I prefer Patio if only for this reason though was somewhat disappointed by the dessert and soup. Patio, I am told, can be expensive when ordering off the a-la-carte menu though our set menu was reasonably priced. However, if it is authentic home Polish cooking it would seem to me that you can't do any better than Patio.

Rating: “Really good but I have some issues”

Review Date: 2016-10-26


Cuisine: Polish

Address: 5 Goldhawk Road, London, W12 8QQ

Public Transport: TUBE Shepherd's Bush

Location: London (England) - Shepherd's Bush

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Telephone: +44 (0) 208 743 5194

URL: http://patiolondon.com/