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From the people behind Dabbous: unusual well-executed cooking
in Fitzrovia, central London — with casual family-friendly vibes and affordable prices but with no bookings, alas.

Getting in touch with our inner bumpkin is still a niche interest in London, and it’s one that Barnyard is now here to satisfy.

Barnyard’s walls are corrugated iron; the tables stripped planks; plates are enameled; some seats are oil drums.

But wait a minute? Isn’t this the latest venture from Ollie Dabbous,

a chef, so cuttingedge he could probably chop down a wild elderberry shrub with his bare hands while out foraging.

Barnyard’s menu, at first glance, can read like highway service station caff — cauliflower cheese, sausage roll, chicken-in-a-bun — until you delve a bit deeper.

“Lard on Toast” and “Mince and Dumpling” are just that, in smallplates portions — but both dishes were full-flavored and beautiful in their simplicity. More complex was the crispy chicken wings rubbed with smoked paprika, garlic and lemon — succulent and fragrant — the envy of many dedicated chicken-fryers.

Despite the affordable pricing and no-bookings policy, there is haute cuisine precision in many of the dishes. Try the “Acornflour Waffle”, firmly-textured and perfectly formed, or the “Popcorn Ice-Cream”, which is served with a fudge sauce so smoky you have to look around for the diesel exhaust.

But in small amounts: it adds a welcome extra dimension to the dish.

Service is charming, the low bill is even more agreeable. Be prepared to queue. The Barnyard is tiny.

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