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Review: Bumpkins, Westfield City, Stratford

Bumpkins, is in the newly (ish) opened Westfield City complex.  From the outside promotes itself along the lines of 'as British as you can get'.  The menu emphasises afternoon tea, British fish, British vegetables and British meat.  Our Spanish waiter was charming and nothing was too much trouble.  We went in just before the dinner rush for something light to restore the tissues after some labour intensive capitalist activity in John Lewis.

My dining partner had the carrot and ginger soup which was burning hot in temperature but excellent although the bread which accompanied it was hard and dry.  I had the smoked mackerel pate with pickled cucumber and fennel which arrived with toasted bread.  The interested presentational twist was to skin the mackerel and sear the skin until paper thin and stab this into the top of the serving of pate almost like a cuttle-fish.  The pickled cucumber formed the foundation of the ramekin with fennel on top of the cucumber and a dollop of mackerel pate.  I tired quickly of the pickled cucumber and had the fennel been samphire (which at first thought I thought it was) it would have been much improved.

The surroundings and facilities were nice.  The only dampener was that the restaurant looked out onto one of the main concourses and it seems the Compare the Market advert was playing on a loop.  So much as I tried to concentrate on my dinner, I was constantly distracted by a rather large Aleksandr the meercat strumming a guitar, in a smoking jacket.

Surroundings 4/5 as long as you aren't in the line of sight of the neon lights.
Food 4/5 on a limited sampling
Service 5/5 (Retrieved my dropped scarf and suggested a few things we might have liked to try)