The Poacher’s Pocket Supper Club
There’s something dreamily English about a pop-up dining experience that manages to encompass two great traditions from opposite ends of the social spectrum.
The Poacher’s Pocket collective is back after a sabbatical following last year’s wassailing-themed event. Still, diners are presented with a fine dining menu which would not look out of place in Mayfair; but this time around the cracking food was served up in the wholeheartedly working-class surrounding of an east-end pie and mash shop.
The four-course menu from chef Daryll Wilson was finely tweaked with the help of Fat Duck chef Jason Thain; and between them, the boys came up with another fabulous menu which combines many great British traditional ingredients with elements of modern cooking talent.
Though there is a full vegetarian menu available, the real test here is the meat dishes. Often the vegetarian option is more of a concession rather than the main event and that is absolutely fine – they’re called the Poacher’s Pocket; not the Forager’s, or the Mushroom Pickers.
There is little to be said but absolute praise for the overall menu; it was faultless. The wild pig hash starter had enough of the shredded boar to be flavoursome, but did not overpower it. The boar was teamed with a hazelnut and sherry vinegar dressing which created tangy, earthy top notes; the perfect tantalising appetiser. More magnificent meatiness came along for entrée in the shape of venison loins served with all the (rather smart) trimmings.
So food was a no-brainer. It was all perfectly planned, prepared and served. The venue, on the other hand, left a lot to be desired. Maybe not so much the venue as the proprietor herself but the less said about that, the better.
The Poacher’s Pocket collective will be running restaurants at travelling locations throughout the year. Follow their Facebook page for regular updates.