Restaurant Review: The Alwyne Castle, Highbury, London

The Alwyne Castle, Highbury

The Alwyne Castle, Highbury

The Alwyne Castle – just a short walk from Highbury & Islington Station in North London – is your quintessential cosy English pub. Every year, it fully embraces the fun and festivities of Christmas; fir trees adorned with twinkling lights, dining by candlelight and a warm, ambient atmosphere make this the perfect location for your Christmas party, not to mention the Festive Menu of incredible dishes featuring classic Christmas flavours and decadent puds. And it’s a steal at only £24 for three courses.

Christmas at The Alwyne Castle in Highbury

Christmas at The Alwyne Castle in Highbury

Christmas dinner reservations at The Alwyne Castle in London

Christmas dinner reservations at The Alwyne Castle in London

Starters include a silky parsnip and honey soup, elegant sloe gin cured salmon, thyme and garlic mushrooms with a rich Stilton sauce, chicken liver parfait served with a wintery Bramley apple and fig chutney and a seeded goat’s cheese roulade, which I chose.

Goat's cheese roulade starter

Goat’s cheese roulade starter

A generous portion of creamy soft goat’s cheese, rolled in fragrant herbs is served with delicate slices of red wine poached pear, glistening sugared pecans, baby kale and a drizzle of sweet honey; an absolutely beautiful combination that I enjoyed with a gently fizzing glass of Prosecco.

The mains covered all bases, from a traditional turkey dinner (with the added luxe of Gran Marnier and ginger stuffing) and a fruity parsnip, carrot and cranberry nut roast for veggies, to pan-roasted sea-reared trout with a Devon crab crush and luxurious Prosecco lobster sauce. I went for the slow-cooked blade of beef, served on smooth horseradish mashed potatoes with honey roast carrots and parsnips, crisp Brussels sprouts and a tasty jus. The beef was tender, meaty and packed with savoury umami flavour.

Blade of beef main

Blade of beef main

Allowing ourselves a considerable pause between savoury and sweet, my friends and I enjoyed a bottle of velvety Merlot before ordering dessert. I chose the Welsh honey, Medjool date, fig and pistachio frangipane tart, served with a light whipped cream and blackcurrant sauce. Intensely nutty, buttery and fruity, this was a delicious end to one of the best meals I have had this year.

Frangipane tart dessert

Frangipane tart dessert

The Alwyne Castle

83 St. Paul’s Road

Highbury

London

N1 2LY

T: 020 7359 7351

www.thealwynecastleislington.co.uk

Open 12:00pm-23:00pm (Sun-Wed); 12:00pm-00:00am (Thurs & Fri); 10:00am-00:00am (Sat)

NB: For the Festive Menu, courses must be pre-booked upon reservation.