Welcome to Louis WAGS It! A monthly review of Zahra and Louis’ top restaurant picks from the WagIt platform.
After studying cookery and food sciences for over 5 years, Zahra decided to settle down with someone who has impeccable taste when it comes to dining out. That someone is Louis. On this blog, they will combine their food expertise to review WagIt’s restaurants and give you the lowdown on where to eat and what to order.
Each month, they will break down a selection of venues with Louis’ WAGS.
W for Where – All you need to get there
A for Atmosphere – What makes this place special?
G for Grub – Zahra’s passion and domain
S for Service – Louis tells all.
Louis WAGS It – Summertime
We’re back with the second round of Louis WAGS It restaurant reviews. Summer is officially in full swing and we’re serving a pick n’ mix of three of the coolest London locations to take your dog and delight your tastebuds.
As a foodie and cheese addict, I’ve searched out fondue across the world. I’ve tried it in France, Switzerland and even South Africa, but I never thought I would find a place to eat fondue with my dog!
Everything from the delicious cheese, imaginative owner and quirky atmosphere has contributed to making this one of the most memorable dining experiences I’ve had in a very long time. All this was booked hassle-free on WagIt and without breaking the bank.
Where: Moments away from Shoreditch High Street, amongst all the East London hipsters, you’ll find the middle-aged wizard of fondue who is the definition of cool. He’s traveled the world, mastered the art of Jiu Jitsu and is now feeding Londoners and their dogs who are lucky enough to book ahead and indulge in this memorable experience.
Atmosphere: Imagine an antique corner shop hidden behind closed graffiti shutters with a handful of tables. There’s a small stage for live performers and each table is set uniquely for each guests (especially the furry ones!). Luca, the owner, has lived a few doors down the road for years and runs the show completely on his own. He preps the fondue, serves the guests and even does card tricks for each table. As if that isn’t quirky enough, he also has a small room at the back where he teaches Jiu Jitsu.
Grub: The set menu consists of a charcuterie and cheese platter, followed by a bubbling pot of fondue for the table, served with bread and new potatoes. All this for £24 a head and finished off with some Amalfi limoncello. The fondue is by no means traditional moitie-moitie, which in French refers to the half split of gruyere and vacherin with a kirsch base. The Bistrot Walluc fondue is made with its own mix of cheese (varieties of Comte and Gruyere), and is wholly delicious.
Service: Is this doggy heaven??? This place is kind of scary and I’m not sure what to investigate first, but boy do I really like this man! He’s given me a party hat, let me sit at the table with my mummy and he keeps checking that I’m having a good time. Is this our new home?
Louis WAGS It: 5/5
The Jolly Gardeners – Putney
When it’s scorching hot outside and the game is on, there’s nothing like a friendly pub, with hearty food and big tv screens to camp out at with your best fur-friend. This is The Jolly Gardeners in Putney summed up for you. Ideal for a lazy Sunday or a big meet-up with mates, they have you and your little pooch covered.
Where: Not to be confused with other pubs of the same name (easily done in a city with over 3,500 pubs) The Jolly Gardeners is a neighbourhood favourite in Putney on a small residential road. The owner and her St. Bernard live right upstairs and pop down to greet the locals over a casual pint. This pub is like their big open living room and garden, always welcoming to friendly faces that walk by.
Atmosphere: It’s spacious, cosy and most importantly, super cool! On a day with a slight breeze, there’s a lovely pub garden on the back and outdoor tables out front. Sick of the heat, Louis and I made the most of the interior setup with big wooden tables, comfy benches and wicked air conditioning. A perfect setting for you and your furry pal on a hot summer’s day!
Grub: At this pub, the starters and sides steal the show. We ordered the halloumi fries as nibbles and I’ld trek all the way back just to have a portion to myself. Being a Sunday, our table of 4 decided to go for the full roast. The trimmings were satisfactory and the red wine gravy made to perfection, but the meat itself wasn’t much to rave about. Desserts looked pretty and sounded yummy but didn’t hit the spot
Service: Oh my, it’s so nice and cool in here and look… There’s a comfy bench for my nap! I wouldn’t mind staying here all day with the lovely people bringing me heart-shaped treats and chasing the other doggies around the table. If only they had a wee roast for me too.
Louis WAGS It: 3/5
Humble Grape Battersea
Finding an intimate setting that caters to your date and your furry mate is one of the biggest challenges for a foodie dog parent living in London. I’m thrilled to tell you that Louis and I have found the gem you’ve been searching for. Humble Grape is hands down and bottoms up the best date spot for you and your pooch. Plus, your human date will love it too!
Where: The flagship branch in Battersea popped up around 8 years ago to offer wine lovers a broad selection of bottles from across the world. Since then, they’ve opened up 4 other locations in the city but have kept the heart, knowledge and love of the vine across all their locations.
Atmosphere: Walking into this establishment is like entering a cosy wine attic with mezzanine floors. The use of space is both clever and romantic with small wooden tables and bottles lining the walls floor to ceiling. WagIt customers are given an extra warm welcome with a complimentary glass of prosecco!
Grub: I highly recommend sampling the wines with a special tasting of four for £15 on Tuesday evenings. The food menu is extensive and offers everything from small plates, to cheese boards and a selection of steaks. I would skip the mains and go with classics from the small plates to compliment the wines. Their take on a Bang Bang Cauliflower is generous in portion size and flavour, not to be missed. The cheese board is well balanced and served with a delicate truffle honey accompaniment.
Service: Mummy is always so happy with her big glass of grape juice and nothing makes me more pleased than tagging along to see her giggle. She took me for a long walk in my favourite park nearby and, the minute I walked into Humble Grape, I was given lots of cuddles plus a big bowl of cold water. I passed out next to mum and even woke up to a plate of treats. I hope we visit again very soon!
Louis WAGS It: 4/5