Down in Peckham, red means summer. If you look up when turning into Peckham Rye station and see the pillar box red awning you know that there are good times ahead. After six storeys of gentle climbing and a winding through a scattering of sculptures you will be greeted with a smile, a damn good negroni and a head spinning view of they city. This is the magic of Frank's, three summers on of good booze, honest food and out of the box ideas.
The message resonating from the twelve course spread was clear: to nurture what our fair isles provide us and flaunt it. The outcome was a spot on medley of familiar, foraged and at the foremost delicious. From the off set the table was littered with stand out dishes; the radish dish set the tone for what edible delights beckoned, an unassuming plate of leafy topped magenta bulbs knocked our socks off, as their freshness richocheted off the nutty black sesame and velvety mayo dip followed by translucent slithers of creamy cured pork fat and cobnuts.
|Radishes with black sesame and an anonymous yet delish mayo consistency dip|
One of many Negroni's and the London skyline
|Cured Pork Fat and Cobnuts|
Everything else was either new to me or a novel twist on well known dish. Such as nasturtium, a water cress type leaf found in most back gardens, mixed in with fennel, cucumber and dressed mackerel. Or a fried favourite, chicken but battered in buttermilk and sesoned with pine salt. Presented on a pretty bed of pine needles and cones, the heat of the nuggets released the fragrant woody oils from the decorative pine, triple sensory bliss.
|Grilled Onion, Pickled Elderberries and Redcurrants|
Fried chicken and Pine Salt
One of the most memorable bites of the meal were the two in which I demolished the grouse sausage. Not in my wildest meat dreams could i have conjured up such as taste sensation; the meat was rich enough so the generous grinding of pepper was all it needed even with simple seasoning the crisp casing was packed to the brim with the succulent meat flavours it was practically bursting out trying to reach the damsons and mellow bread sauce.
|Gimme another grouse sausage, now. Please.|
Since this is an Ocakbasi the open fire was raging and the meat on top was soaking up all the charred goodness of the rising smoke all night. So each meat and grilled dish had this added dimension and caramelised depth, which particularly enhanced the tenderness of the bbq pork and lent a hand into bringing out the sweetness in the leeks for the grilled leek and XO dish.
|BBQ Pork and fennel blossoms|
As well as letting the grilled goodness stand alone, I really liked the lamb heart wrap. Delicate morsels of meat with a full bodied flavour were married with silken sheep's yoghurt and roughed up with anchovy punches, all blanketed up in a warm flatbread.
|Lamb heart, sheeps yoghurt and anchovy flat bread|
After all that savoury we had one more course left, and it was incredible. The desert was a hazelnut mousse with mulberry jelly and raspberries, each mouthful was like a nutty cloud rippled with a condensed muddle of berry pang and sweetness, but the smoothness of the hazelnut levelled everything out into pure dreams. I continuously hark back to taking the PB & J combination to the next level, and this folks I think may be it.
|Hazelnut Cloud and Mulberry Ripple|
The take over was truly a good sign of things to come, collaborations with this new breed of inventive food lovers seems to becoming a London event staple. Which is more than fine with me, as long as you are quick enough to nab the golden tickets. With us now at the very tail end of summer and Frank's annual occupancy, take it in at the roof top with a strong cocktail and start plotting your next feasting destination.
|Just a little shout out to Thomas Whitehead, a few of the above pics are stills of his video of the event - an infill due to my unsteady excited hands and a combination of being surrounded by too many hungry mouths and a tardy snap shotting finger!|