At Ravenscourt Park (between Hammersmith and Chiswick), there’s a massive Polish Social and Cultural Centre with a library, bookshop, cinema, jazz club, and, of course, a restaurant and cafe (amongst many other services). I, of course, was keen to try the final two.
We headed to their main restaurant Lowiczanka one Saturday night and just managed to grab one of the last tables for two (we hadn’t made a reservation but it was clear that we should have!). This was prior to Christmas and there were lots of groups dressed up and partying. There was live music and disco lights and a dancefloor and couples would just randomly get up and dance. We felt very underdressed.
We skipped starters that evening and went straight to mains. Sausage with hunters stew was a large grilled specimen served with a sauerkraut based stew cooked with various porky bits.
Blai’s breast of duck served with cherry sauce was the real winner – a large roast duck portion with a sweet and tangy cherry compote. It was even served in a baked apple, though this could have been baked for longer.
These were served with beetroot and carrot salads..
…and we also got a sour cabbage salad as we didn’t originally order the beetroot one. Plus one for service!
Overall, the mains were fine though not spectacular. We were a little surprised at the atypically modest portion sizes; in our experience, most Polish restaurants have massive portions.
Much much better were their desserts! I chose a coffee gateau while Blai had some ice cream. It was all brilliant in an old-fashioned kind of way; I almost expected the desserts to come out on a trolley!
238-246 King St
London W6 0RF
We took a peek at the jazz cafe before we left and it looks fantastic! It’s a great space with seating at tables and on the floor (with pillows) and if I were a fan, I’d definitely head there.
On another afternoon, I popped into their cafe on the ground floor for a quick lunch; it’s a much more casual place and the prices reflect that. Mixed pierogi were calling out to me and I opted for a mixture of sauerkraut+mushroom and minced meat. They had all been fried in lard and were hearty and comforting, with their sides of carrot and beetroot salads. I preferred the tang of the sauerkraut+mushrooms perogi, finding the minced meat ones a bit heavy (perfect for winter though!).
Their cake selection was looking incredible that day (it was a Saturday afternoon) and I chose something I’d certainly never seen before – this cheese and apple slice. The biscuit layers were amazingly light and melted in the mouth while the yellow cheese layer was like a cross between custard and cheesecake. All that and the applesauce layered in between, mmmmm….
If you do see their cheesecake on the counter (sernik), do ensure you get a slice! Their baked cheesecake is amazingly light and fluffy and we love it!
238-246 King St
London W6 0RF
Personally, I prefer the casual cafe to the more formal restaurant upstairs but for classic Polish food, both are pretty good bets.