Having worked at St John’s, Bao and Pollen Street Social, husband and wife team Terry Blake and Yohini Nandakumar have opened Sparrow. Opened for about a year now, it has taken the traditionally good food starved Lewisham by storm and gained plaudits from diners across London. Open for dinner Tuesday to Saturday, and Saturdays and Sundays for brunch, they serve a seasonal changing menu.
The team always has a smile as they move through the simple and stripped back décor of the dining space from the open kitchen and bar at the end of the room. The menu is international in nature, taking influences from many regions, reflecting the fact that the sparrow is a bird found in all regions of the world. Rather than courses, the menu is split into savoury and dessert, the idea being to pick a selection of dishes to share.
The soft-boiled eggs with pork and anchovy relish and crispy shallots are a must. It sounds a strange combination but vibrant orange yolk mixed with the salty relish and crispy shallots is a match made in heaven. The picked crab is such a wonderfully fresh take on crab. There is often a risotto on the menu that is such a bright colour its hard to believe, just as is the flavour it packs. Among the meat dishes the lamb chops are always a must and have a frequently changing garnish, while the red pork T-bone, if on the menu, is certainly worth a go.
I can’t recommend Sparrow more highly, but make sure you book, it is constantly full as diners know they’re onto a good thing with it. So take any opportunity you can to go, be it for a collaboration set menu with another chef, as they did with Calum Franklin for National Pie Week, or the weekend brunch with its Sri Lankan and tropical influences.
Sparrow is the shining light in what, with the exception of a few places, has been the food wasteland of Lewisham.
London Lamppost Score(4 / 5)
2 Rennell Street