Despite my declarations of not visiting Pittcue Co again due to its’ small venue, somehow I find myself waiting for friends at 1 Newburgh St, on a bitterly cold and frigid night. A quick half-pint at the White Horse across and we nip over the pebbled path to Pittcue Co, expectations high. We try to push the door open – why isn’t it opening? – are we stupid? Are we meant to be pulling the door, not pushing? But there’s no handle. The door’s locked. Yes – locked. At 6pm. Is this what getting ribs at arguably the best BBQ restaurant London has come to? I can see people inside. Maybe 5 people at the most. How embarrassing. In a moment of embarrassment and panic, Rach ducks to the left of the door, out of sight, while Elen and I
discreetly awkwardly take a step to the right and pretend to be casually inspecting the menu clipped to the curtain inside. The inside we want so desperately to get to.
Eventually someone unlocks the door and asks us to wait a few minutes. Outside. In the cold. ‘Ok’ we meekly reply. Let in a few minutes later; before we’ve even had a chance to order drinks we get taken downstairs and given the prime spot under the stairs. Drinks are ordered and all is well.
Specials on the menu tonight are a smoked quail. Too many bones. I don’t like to work for my food. Onglet. Meh, why have onglet when I can have ribs? The food surprisingly takes about 30minutes to come out.
Plate after plate walk by me. The wafting smells are tortuous. I contemplate sticking out my hand and smacking the food out of the hands with the hopes some of it will land in my mouth. I refrain. When the food comes out I am given this. A glorious slab of ribs. Look how shiny and glossy they are!
We divide up all the sides so we can try a bit of everything. The burnt end mash is rich, creamy and smooth. Beans soft and the pickled hock salad is perhaps a little light on the ham hock, but to be honest the tangy crispness is a relief from heaviness of the other 2 sides. And the ribs? Oh, the ribs. I yank the meat of the bone, careful not to get BBQ sauce on my face. With sticky hands, I clumsily pick up a spoon to delicately shovel mash and beans in my mouth. The slaw and pickles I pick up with my hands. No one notices.
With only 2 desserts on the menu we order both and share. I make the mistake of wondering out loud what is contained in the Big Mac and Rye cocktail before heading to the loo. While I’m gone, to speed up the ordering process, one is ordered on my behalf. It’s pretty much all alcohol. With a twist of orange! But seriously, it’s pure alcohol and I’m pretty drunk after a couple of sips. Tastebuds are burnt off.
The first dessert is a bourban soaked sticky pudding, bourban ice cream and bourban soaked sultanas, which is a new addition from the first night. The bourban is more prominent this time around, but not unbearably so for my alcohol-sensitive palate. The pudding is comfort food and is lovely and moreish, but the 2nd dessert of rhubarb in a jar? Swoon. No wait – I mean – SWOOOON! Served in a jar, layers of rhubarb, biscuit and a mousse-like cheesecake of sorts. Not a huge fan of rhubarb, the taste of it was a little bit tart, the texture soft. The topping had the flavour of lemon cheesecake but was more akin to a light and aerated mousse. I save the biscuit base for last because it was the best bit. Crunchy bits that were maybe soaked in something because there was a little bit of give to them. I dunno. The texture reminded me of cornflake honey joys. I should think I would enjoy an entire jar of nothing but the biscuity bits. I didn’t get great photos of the desserts. Just kidding. I didn’t get any photos of the desserts because I was tipsy. And I forgot. So here are some drawings I made. Visualise if you will:
With just the last round of drinks to finish off, we are asked if we can finish our drinks upstairs at the bar. Feeling guilty at having monopolised a premium piece of real estate we oblige and head upstairs into what can only be described as carnage. There are people and elbows and handbags everywhere. The door is still locked. Is that even safe? Not really caring, because hey – I’ve already eaten, we consume our beverages directly in front of the glass door where I proceed to overtly sip my cocktail and rub my belly in satisfaction so the people waiting in line outside can see. This is purely to teach them a lesson that if you want to eat at Pittcue you should arrive at exactly 6pm. I waddle off to the tube to get out of the cold. Good night all round.