On The Hoof Bistro, SE26 5EX
- 020 8659 7333
- 23 Sydenham Road, SE26 5EX
- Mon-Sat: 9.30am-9.30pm, Sun: 10am-4pm
Small, friendly cafe/restaurant in Sydenham, opened in 2014. The owners also run the small coffee kiosk inside Sydenham Station, a few minutes' walk away. The building used to be an optician's for many years; as a nod to this, the bill arrives in a glasses case.
The decor consists of simple reclaimed wooden tables/desks and mismatched chairs, with one wall of framed mirrors and the other of framed portrait photographs. The front window meanwhile gives a good view of local passers-by.
During the week the lunch menu features soups, salads and sandwiches as well as more hearty lasagnas/casseroles dishes, while on Sunday lunchtimes it's just roast dinners. In the evenings the menu is more of a relaxed European brasserie style. A sign in the window in March 2015 was advertising live acoustic music on Saturday nights.
Kat and Rick visited for Sunday lunch in March 2015. The Sunday menu featured beef, pork, chicken and veggie roasts (all £12.50 except the veggie, which was £10.50). We both opted for the pork and each received an enormous pile of food: two huge slices of juicy roast pork, spiced apple sauce, two roast potatoes, sweet potato mash, glazed carrots, two Yorkshire puddings, stuffing (delicious). Also included in the price was a side dish of three big chunks of cauliflower cheese, which Rick said was surprisingly good (Kat declined hers beforehand, as cauliflower is a horrific vegetable), and a dish of extra crackling (excellently crisp, not too teeth-breaking). We were feeling almost full when our server brought us out two extra Yorkshire puddings that were apparently going spare. We left feeling very satisfied — my only criticism would be that the cutlery was not quite sharp enough to attack the meat efficiently.
A pot of tea was £2.20, and a bottle of Roscoe's Amber Ale (which arrived pre-poured in a glass) was £4. Service was very attentive, the owner happily came and showed me the beer bottle afterwards as I'd forgotten what it was called and wanted to make a note of it.
Kat's verdict: one of the best Sunday roasts I've had in a while, and much better value for money than your standard pub roast. I'll definitely return.
Accessibility: a step to get in, didn't check the toilets. Some of the tables and chairs are very close together and might be awkward to navigate around.