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Laughing Gravy (Bar, Restaurant)

Picture of Laughing Gravy in Borough & Southwark, London

154 Blackfriars Road, The Borough, Borough & Southwark, London, SE1 8EN
Cuisine: International Average Price: £45.00
Tel: 020 7998 1707 | Email to Laughing Gravy | Transport: Southwark | Write review

Laughing Gravy Review

Best for: pre-theatre in Southwark, Christmas parties, dates.

Great: great seasonal menu, wine list, service.

All day, if not all week, I had been hankering after a huge, succulent, slab of blue-to-the-point-of-mooing red meat; and, of course, an excessive goblet of glistening red alongside. I am not entirely sure what sparked this desire for a macho feast but I knew it needed to be satisfied and fast.

I also had very exact specifications for my man-chow. I didn’t want the ‘is that a stamp on my plate?’ variety smothered in foam, stops and whistles. Hell no. I needed an arrogant cut, the size of a small island, likely to put hair on my chest and allow me to wax lyrical about ball sports.

With meat on my mind and my sister in tow, I headed to The Laughing Gravy pub in South East London. The bar-cum-pub-cum-restaurant is hidden in the lively rabbit warren that runs between Borough and the South Bank. It was a very swift walk from Waterloo underground, past the Old Vic theatre and down a rather dubious back street. Luckily the warm lights streaming from the pub were in sight and we managed to avoid one or two dodgy characters lurking along the way.

We were coolly welcomed as soon as we stepped inside by a friendly barmaid. Too often idle London barmen have ignored me, so they were off to a flying start.

The space is high, long and wide with a smattering of artwork on the walls and ancient maps of London. A piano on one side made us think a touch of live music might go down well with a bubbling crowd. The lighting was spot on to take the glare off my face, but in the bathroom, bright enough to touch-up my mascara without a poke in the eye.

Sadly, only a few tables were occupied, making us slightly wary. Where were all the people? To be honest, I wasn’t too bothered as long as there was plenty of meat in the kitchen.

Our table of choice (oh yes we were allowed to choose!) was a friendly looking two-top at the back of the restaurant, the ideal position to spy and perve on the crowd.

I did a bit of research pre-visit that mainly involved calling my foodie-guzzling friends to see if they had been to or heard of The Laughing Gravy. Those who had been had, loved it; Dad is a huge fan. He has been going for a few years and said we would be in for a good night.

The owner, Jon Wise, took the reins in August of 2010. The Laughing Gravy has been his local for a while and he seized the opportunity when it became available. Jon warmed us up and pointed out the most drool-worthy items on the menu.

The wine list is well chosen and a good size with bottles starting from £15 and 500ml carafes, ideal if you’re not in for the long haul. We ordered a scrumptious, plummy Chilean Merlot suggested by our waitress and guaranteed to go with meat, followed by more meat.

To start, we shared the pate; a smooth and thoroughly moreish affair that we smothered liberally on crisp toast with tangy red onion dressing; utterly lush and plenty for two.

This was swiftly followed by the main event; lamb marinated in Guinness (I was getting manlier by the minute) cut through by broad bean mint salsa and rosemary garlic potatoes, the kind of fluffy goo on the inside and crunch on the outside that only Mums can master. I was filing up fast but couldn’t stop my fork diving into my plate for another mouthful.

My palate-in-crime inhaled an expertly cooked rib eye piled high with green beans, shallots and mushroom. And what would a proper steak be without chips? We dipped and dunked these hand cut, chunky offerings in a mess of mayo and ketchup within minutes of them hitting the table.

High five to the head chef, Michael Facey, who has been cooking up modern British fare at leading London gaffs for over 20 years. Michael prides himself on using the freshest, seasonal produce and even uses herbs and vegetables from a nearby community garden. It doesn’t get much fresher than that.

Close to a coronary, we greedily devoured an intoxicating G&T lemon posset and chunky chocolate brownie heaped with crème fraiche for dessert. We both agreed the starters were not as memorable as the starter and main course but a good sweet ending to our macho banquet.

We rolled out the front door totally sated and happy to see a few more bums on seats.

The Laughing Gravy pub offers a warm haven to a discerning palate, and I would definitely return for pre-theatre nosh and miscellaneous banter. Equally, I would be pleasantly surprised to end up there on a date and would thoroughly recommend it to wannabe Romeos. Whether choosing to imbibe or consume, theatre-goers, Saturday night revellers, and star-struck lovers will savour the eclectic, seasonal menu and attractive wine list of this south London gastropub.
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Laughing Gravy Opening Hours

Monday: 12:00pm - 3:00pm
5:00pm - 10:00pm
Friday: 12:00pm - 3:00pm
5:00pm - 10:30pm
Tuesday: 12:00pm - 3:00pm
5:00pm - 10:00pm
Saturday: 12:00pm - 4:00pm
5:00pm - 10:30pm
Wednesday: 12:00pm - 3:00pm
7:00pm - 10:00pm
Sunday: 12:00pm - 4:30pm
Thursday: 12:00pm - 3:00pm
5:00pm - 10:00pm
   

Additional Information

Laughing Gravy Food & Drinks

  • Cuisine Type: International
  • Average Price: £45.00

Laughing Gravy Food Menu

The Laughing Gravy's menu has ‘good meaty’ international options and some vegetarian & fish dishes.

Updated 10/10/2006

Laughing Gravy Hire Details

The Laughing Gravy can also cater for private parties of up to 100 people.

Updated 10/10/2006

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Venue ID: 16310

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Loved

"Love the place, the food and the coffee, but most important is the staff and their happy smiling faces every time I go in. Would recommend this to anyone in the area, or if not - get in your car, drive..." Which venue is this?

Hated

"I have been there a few times over the years. The girls are great, there are usually about 5-6 there at any one time. All are attractive and usually there are at least one or two busty ones (my preference,..." Which venue is this?

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