As a child whenever we came up to London we were "treated" to a McDonald's, I absolutely loved it and I think this is where my burger obsession started.
When I was very young I would ask for a specially made burger with absolutely nothing in it other than the patty. As I grew up I became more adventurous - the McChicken sandwich, the quarter pounder with cheese (obviously) and then the Big Mac which was a firm favourite. Unfortunately due to all the bad press McDonald's receives I now very rarely go. In fact my brother wanted to report me to the NSPCC as at the age of 5, my daughter Arabella had never tasted a thing from the Golden Arches (she has now been a couple of times and thinks it's heaven). However I can't stomach it because I have heard too many rumours about dirty kitchens, poor ingredients etc, which is unfortunate as I really do love a Big Mac.
Thankfully there are lots of other good burgers out there…
The Admiral Codrington, or the cod as I have always known it, is a gastro pub with a smart dining area, a small terrace and a private dining room. I first came here when I was 17 although I was more into the drinking part than eating then and it has changed quite a bit!!
Pascal and I ventured here for supper last night. As soon as we arrived the service was impeccable and we were shown to a big booth (perfect for all the plates we always order). Unfortunately there were only two other tables taken in the restaurant so the atmosphere was very drab.
I was torn about what to order - I always remember the squid being brilliant but there were also several bar bites I wanted as well as….such a piglet. I knew for I would be having a burger and mac and cheese but then the menu had lots of other appealing dishes such as risotto with butternut squash and Gorgonzola or pork belly….but old habits die hard.
In the end to start we chose the tempura prawns with sweet chilli sauce, the welsh rarebit and the homemade pork rolls from the bar bites menu.
The prawns were amazing - in breadcrumbs rather than fatty batter - I just wish there had been more. The sauce was far too spicy for me but luckily they had soy sauce.
The welsh rarebit also had a kick to it but it was absolutely delicious - very cheesy.
The homemade pork rolls (sausage rolls) were also extremely tasty, homemade sausage meat in light puff pastry.
We couldn't not have the squid and ordered a starter size rather than the bar bite and I am so pleased we did as it was fabulous. The salt and pepper squid is served with green chilli, spring onion, coriander and nuoc cham.
It was one of the best squid dishes I have ever had, I even loved the sauce which surprised me - incredible and I highly recommend it.
For mains Pascal and I both had the Admiral Cod's Burger which is 180g rare beef breed, a brioche cream bun, slaw, Montgomery cheddar and bacon served with triple cooked chips. They couldn't cook it rare like Pascal prefers although it was still pretty pink.
What a burger! No wonder people say it is one of the best in London and I have to say it reminded my of a new improved "clean" Big Mac - the slaw mixture at the bottom really made it special and I loved the soft bun, juicy beef beef, crispy bacon and cheese (although next time I would ask for double cheese)! I will definitely be back, especially as they had my favourite side and a very good one at that - Mac & Cheese!
This was a good size portion, cheesy and creamy, and even though I was fit to burst I finished the lot as it was too good to leave!
To drink we had a very good Chianti, recommended to us by the waitress.
No wonder the cod has been around for so long, it is consistently good - great service, great food, great wine. The only thing which was missing was the ambiance but it was a Monday night so I am willing to forget that part, as I am sure it is a different story at the weekend…I will be researching that very soon and I will no doubt be ordering exactly the same things!
The Admiral Codrington
17 Mossop Street
Tel: 020 7581 0005