This week I’ve had the fortune of enjoying my first ever ‘Reading Week’ – or, in other words, my first half-term break since Upper Sixth. With a bit more freedom over my time, I thought I may as well put it to good use, and that is how I landed at Rum Kitchen. Having become all too absorbed in the London Restaurant Festival, it was definitely a nice change to go somewhere a bit more fun and vibrant – in that respect, Rum Kitchen was an easy choice for us.
What do they do?
The clue is rather in the name – Rum Kitchen offer a variety of (usually) rum-based cocktails, and do a great happy hour from 5pm-7pm (or 6pm-8pm in Notting Hill) where a selection of cocktails are available for £5. Alongside these, you can choose from Caribbean-inspired dishes (it’s basically lots and lots of chicken).
What did we have?
I greedily went for 5 pieces of Jerk Chicken, with Rice, Peas, and Slaw (£12.50); Becky went for the Jerk Halloumi Burger (£8.50) with Sweet Potato Fries (£4.50); and, Diya went for Chicken Supreme with with Callaloo, Yam Mash, and Jerk Gravy (£9.50).
The Jerk Chicken was great – charred to just the right extent, yet very succulent underneath. In hindsight, 3 pieces would’ve sufficed, but I certainly didn’t regret my gluttony. The accompanying nibbles provided a nice, almost sour crunch which bounced off the chicken very nicely. All in all, a generous and tasty portion.
Becky thought that deep-frying the halloumi was perhaps a bit OTT, and that a simple grilling would’ve sufficed. Nonetheless, the burger went down well, and the sweet potato fries received a big thumps up!
Diya was delighted with the hefty portion of yam mash (who wouldn’t be?!) However, she thought that the gravy overpowered the other flavours on offer, and maybe would’ve been better off on the side. All things considered, though, another tasty dish.
Unfortunately, we missed the boat for the happy hour cocktails – a 45-minute wait for a table awaited us upon arrival – but two of us indulged in a bottle of Pinot Grigio (£22.50), whilst the other opted for a mocktail (yes, a mocktail). Notwithstanding its sober nature, the mocktail received a rave review both for value and for deliciousness!
Value for money: 4/5 – we got a bit lucky on this front. Our waiter made us aware of an app which gave us £10 each off our bills, meaning that my jerk chicken and half-bottle of wine came to less than £17 (including tip). Definitely a bargain, and £27 would’ve been a fair price.
Pretentiousness: 1/5 – refreshingly normal and authentic. Tasty food with no nonsense.
Atmosphere: 3/5 – lively and not too serious. Friendly (but a little slow) staff.
Rum Kitchen lived up to the billing, and we’d definitely return – next time, though, we’d book a table or rock up a bit earlier, to make the most of their tasty, cheap cocktails!