After what felt like the longest Summer, the winter months are finally upon us and this means winter pop-ups. An unlikely room above a pub in Clapham has been transformed into an Alpine themed Ski-Lodge for the coming months all thanks to TV Chef and pop-up entrepreneur Jimmy Garcia.
Hidden on a side street opposite Clapham North station, The Lodge brings a taste of the slopes to South London. The cosy space is decked out with fairy lights, aprés-ski style decor and plenty of wood transforming the room above a pub into a magical winter chalet.
This year is actually the third edition of the winter alpine pop up restaurant and launching on Friday 21st October it will only run for four months through to the end of February.
This year Jimmy has partnered with Verbier, so expect plenty of Swiss cheese, Swiss wines and Morand liquors. Joining Jimmy at The Lodge are Ranulph Lees and Alex Cox, former chefs at Nathan Outlaws Michelin Star restaurant, and they’ve created an exciting new menu of small and sharing plates.
Everything I tried at the press preview was delicious however, the crispy oysters were a revelation and the spiced brown butter cauliflower with pistachios were bold enough to turn any meat lover into a willing vegetarian. Then you try the cured meat platter and the wild boar sausages and, sorry animals, you’re a carnivore again. All the ingredients are responsibly sourced from handpicked independent food producers.
With an emphasis on sharing, the real piece de resistance and the house signature dish is the fondue. As you walk in, you’re greeted by a sign on the wall which proudly says “We do fondue” just in case you’d missed it.
I’m no wine connoisseur so I can’t comment on the wine list (which I’m sure has been as thoroughly well sourced as the menu but The Lodge has a fully stocked bar brimming with Swiss Wines and Morand Liquors. The Lodge also has a list of hot and cold cocktails and of course mulled wine and cider. We also had some dangerously delicious shots of toffee liquor served on a customised ski.
Finish your meal with a show stopping Paris Brest, a choux pastry ring with a praline flavoured cream. Or if you’re in the mood for a cold desert, the chocolate mousse with clementine marmalade and lime ice cream is ridiculously delicious.
On Sundays Jimmy will be doing his famous sharing board roasts with bottomless bubbles and 2-4-1 Bloody Mary’s and throughout November every Sunday night will bring a quiz with the winner going into a season draw to win an amazing trip to Verbier, alongside other great prizes.
With an atmosphere of cosy grown up fun, The Lodge in Clapham is the perfect pop-up to have a Winter catch up with friends or warm your belly on cold weekends. Visit soon as the four month run ends in February.
The Lodge, 409 Clapham Road, SW9 9BT
Open from 5.30pm Tuesday – Sunday
Friday 21st October 2016 – End of February 2017