Tian Fu, W12 8AR
- 37 Bulwer Street, W12 8AR
The front section has floor-to-ceiling windows which let in plenty of light during the day. There are a couple of larger tables (six people) here, plus two smaller two-person ones tucked away to the side of the bar. Further back is a darker, cosier area with more seating.
The English name is an abbreviation of the Chinese name, 天府布衣 (tiān fǔ bù yī). As well as the main menu of Sichuan dishes, they also offer hotpot and dim sum. The main menu is fully bilingual (Chinese and English), and many of the dishes are illustrated with photos.
Kake visited on a Friday late lunchtime in June 2010. There were a few other customers in, but no trouble finding me a place. Peaceful vocal music was playing (including what sounded like a Chinese rendition of "My Grandfather's Clock").
I went for the sliced pork with loofah (絲瓜肉片/sī guā ròu piàn; £7) photo and some plain rice (£1.80). The flavour of the pork and loofah dish was quite mild, but kept interesting by the occasional bit of ginger and garlic. The pork was cut a little haphazardly for my taste. The loofah was interesting, though — I'd not had this vegetable before. It was bitter in places, where the seeds hadn't been entirely removed, but it may be meant to be like this. The rice was a little mushy in places, but this may be because I was there towards the end of the lunch service.
Service was fine. A 10% service charge was added to the bill.
Accessibility: One step up to get in. Toilets are down a flight of stairs in the basement; there's a handrail on one side but it only covers the bottom half of the staircase.