The Botanist is a lovely pub right on the corner of Kew Green.
It's light and airy inside and decorated with numerous botanical images drawing a clear link to Kew Gardens (next door).
I phoned the day before to book a table for Sunday lunch and was impressed with the helpful service, including a call back from a manager to confirm the booking (the Calcutta Cup was being played at Twickenham so they were expecting large numbers early during service).
The menu is not vast, but provides a decent selection. The roast beef was delicious (£12). The vegetarian option was a disappointment though - a dry, gravy-less pastry slice that wouldn't have looked out of place behind the counter in Greggs (without reflecting the Greggs pricetag).
Overall, a smart and relaxed pub with attentive staff and a good atmosphere.
The plan had been to go to Kew Gardens after I arrived at Heathrow. We figured since we were out on that side of London, that we would go and have an easy day of just strolling in the park. In typical British fashion, it rained and rained. We decided to drive that way anyway in the hopes that the weather would let up and to find lunch. We found the Botanist. It is certainly very cute! We walked in and were hit by a rather pungent smell... as Ron Burgundy says, "It stings the nostrils." The Botanist is a brewery, so that was the smell.
Mr. Snarky wanted to find a table where we would be out of reach of the smell... we ended up in a cozy little room with a couple of tables, a nice view out to the street, and a very saucy picture of a lady with her dress pulled down below her very plump breasts. They brought us both the lunch menu (2 or 3 courses) and the main menu. Both of us fancied the main menu. I really wanted one of the platters to share, but I thought it might be a bit too greedy. I decided on the Roasted Pork Loin while Mr. Snarky had the Stuffed Chicken Breast Wrapped in Bacon.
The food looked lovely and it smelled nice, but it was a bit average. My pork loin was tough, dry, and had more fat than anything else on it. The mash was fine and so was the braised red cabbage. I did enjoy the apple cider gravy though. It was very tasty. Mr. Snarky ate all of his, he said it was good, but it didn't "wow" him. I did have a taste, but because I don't like brie, it was difficult for me to get down. It just seemed like there was an awful lot on the plate with a lot of different flavors happening.
I was expecting quite a lot, but it didn't quite live up to the hype. I would go back and try some of the other items on the menu... maybe a platter, but I wouldn't re-order what we had on this particular day.
Oh dear , what happened :( the Botanic beers brewed on site have dissappeared and although they have real ales on its pretty national stuff nothing special . the pulls have gone from the front of the bar . it all looks pretty much the same but its definitely lacking a bit of something special .
The Botanist is a pub/restaurant situated just off Kew Green (it was formerly Browns restaurant). The decor is quite classy traditional with a modern twist. It serves good quality British food (I would particularly recommend the sticky toffee pudding), and is a great place to come for a relaxing lunch or dinner. The only thing is it is quite expensive, if you are on a tight budget (main meals are about £8). They have live music on some evenings, in particular Jazz on Sunday evenings - although I have yet to try this.
Excellent beers and atmosphere!
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