Review: No Name, Crookes
The No Name bistro in Crookes opened in June and they seem to have got off a flying start. Every week they are mostly booked up and they’ve received high praise online with 5* reviews on Facebook and Trip Advisor.
I am always excited about new independent food openings and No Name are on my doorstep, so I was keen to find out more.
The owner/ chef is Thomas Samworth who has many years’ experience including stints at Gary Rhodes’ W1, Rowley’s in Baslow and The Schoolrooms in Low Bradfield.
From the menus I’d seen online, the ethos at No Name is focused on making the most of the seasons and using the best of market produce. Delivering simple but quality dishes, rather than a massive range of average or over-complicated options. After reading so much about the food, I got myself a reservation to get a taste of the action.
No Name – Facebook
The small bistro has an unassuming style and is decorated in muted colours with a cosy and comfortable vibe. The menu is handwritten on brown paper and stuck up on the wall and in the window. It’s short, with a few options for each course, a good thing for the indecisive person such as myself.
I went for the home-cured salmon with rosti potato, poached egg and hollandaise (£7) for my starter. The egg was soft with an oozing yolk, the crisp rosti and flavourful hollandaise were spot on. It was a robust plateful with each component cooked well and well-presented.
For my main course, I chose the miso glazed duck leg, oriental cabbage with sweet potato puree (£16). I did think I would be wrestling with bones, I had no need to be concerned as the duck was off the bone. The meat was tender and sweet and the cabbage appeared to be pak choi, which was fine, I like my greens. Together with rich sweet potato, the dish was comfort food at it’s finest. Every ingredient spoke for itself, there were no concepts or fads, just decent cooking with attention to detail.
No Name is a fine addition to the culinary scene of Crookes, expect to enjoy smart restaurant food in informal surroundings, I was not disappointed. It has a good atmosphere, service was calm and efficient and the food delivers, making it worth paying that bit extra for.
No Name operate BYOB (with a small corkage fee) which makes it an attractive option. It is worth noting too that they are cash only, there are cash points nearby, if you do forget!
For November’s Now Then magazine, my feature focuses on seasonal cooking with a Q&A with Blend Kitchen and Thomas from No Name, so look out for that.
You can keep up to date with what’s on the menu at No Name and the latest table availability via their Facebook page.
Open Wednesday-Saturday 6-11pm