I went there because Y wanted to go. So being the dutiful, perfectly wonderful girlfriend that I believe myself to be, I agreed. Y is in a band. And band etiquette states that whenever any of your band friends or fellow members are doing something musical, you should go and watch. Even if it's in Acton. Tonight the lead singer of Y's Motown band was organising, and singing in, an open mic night at the Rocket pub in (altogether now) Acton.
We arrived at about 7.30pm and upon entry I have to say I was pleasantly surprised (and perhaps slightly regretful that I was still wearing black gumboots [I believe you call them wellingtons here] with coloured polka dots) - bare floor boards, a hodge podge of old chairs and couches, a chilled atmosphere. Maybe this would be bearable after all?
We went straight to the dining room for a spot of dinner. I had decided the weather called for some warm wintry stodge, but the menu was a little more ambitious than that.
Service was a little on the slow side (but the waitress was working on the bar too, so understandable), but we were soon provided with wine, water, bread and olive oil.
Y ordered lightly fried sardines and a side of chips (above). The sardines I could smell from my side of the table, and the fries I could far too easily reach from my side of the table. I'm told the sardines were pretty good and I can vouch for the chips being excellent. I had a lamb chump chop (below, boobs not included) which was beautifully pink and with the right about of yummy fatty bits - when no one was looking a had a gnaw on the bone just to make sure I left none of the succulent meat behind. The salad on the side was forgettable as was the potato rosti-ish mound the lamb sat on, but I was poaching Y's fries so it didn't really matter, especially not for just £9 for a main!
We retired to some couches in the main part of the pub to listen to the music. It was like having a sneaky peak into a jamming session as random people volunteered to play guitar, bass, drums and to sing. It was such a great night with some really good talent - I was amazed at the music a couple of people who'd never met can get together and produce. Our enjoyment was no doubt enhanced by a delicious sticky toffee pudding with Egyptian dates, ginger ice cream and a toffee sauce. I was meant to be sharing it with Y but may have become a little possessive.
I wouldn't travel from Islington just to eat here, but if you're in the neighbourhood, or just want to take your wellies for a night out, head to Acton!