The Blackbird is part of a chain of pubs for which I have little love. I’m not averse to visiting Treacle for a drink or two, but the food ain’t great. The food in Hamilton’s just about caused MJ to go on a killing spree, so it wasn’t the best news I’d heard when Blackbird was named as our chosen venue for the evening.
It was on joyous business, though, as it was the prelude to our first Book Group trip to the theatre. Our evening of Agatha Christie was rather enjoyable, but first came the dining.
The Blackbird is quite smart, with a modern feel. Decor is relaxed and eclectic. We were seated in the smaller, alcove-like section, away from the main action of the bar, and soon were spilling over to a second table.
Menus are on crinkly brown paper, which is nicely quirky. Items on offer included standard pub grub favourites, alongside dishes that wouldn’t look amiss on a restaurant menu.
I opted to keep it simple, choosing their beef burger, which was served with chips and salad. Our patient and helpful waitress handled orders, placed in dribs and drabs, very efficiently.
My burger soon arrived, presented simply on a chopping board. I paused to consider how to attack it, eventually settling upon faceward shoving, rather than a dainty knife and fork job.
Whatever method I adopted, there was no hiding that the burger was very poor. It was dry, crumbly and severely lacking in flavour. The bun disintegrated all too quickly, also.
It had a charred exterior that might have worked if there was decent fatty moisture to offset it. As it was, it brought a bitter start to each bite.
In contrast, the chips were really very decent. This gave a much more favourable indication of what the kitchen was capable of producing.
So overall, while the Blackbird is quite a smart place, and I thought the service rather good, it needs to get to work on improving its menu. The burger I had was one of the saddest I’ve tried, to date. It was way too lean, and pretty much just a waste of good beef. As it stands, I’d say come for drinks, but eat elsewhere.
2/5 for food
3.5/5 for presentation
3.5/5 for setting
3.5/5 for service
giving an overall 12.5/20
Today’s questers were: Yelpers, Blythe
I ate: burger, chips, salad
I drank: sparkly water
I wore: pink shirt
Total bill: £11.90