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Out and About, Reviews

Restaurant review: Caravan, King’s Cross

“Let’s meet outside Caravan at 10am”, I texted my friend on the Saturday night before our first visit. 10am is when Caravan King’s Cross opens on Sundays, and yet when we got there, a line of Sunday brunchers was already waiting outside. The queue wasn’t too long; hardly anything to worry about, comparing to the long, dread-inducing lines I’ve noticed at other times of the day. Still, I wondered why those people had felt compelled to come so early to secure a table.

Caravan King's Cross

Caravan King's Cross

It took as little as one bite into my breakfast of choice to understand. Always partial to sweet snacks over savoury brunches, I ordered a slice of pistachio and peach tart that tasted like something out of a dream: rich in flavour and marvellously buttery. Far more buttery than I can afford, but who cares: as the Latin saying goes, “semel in anno licet insanire” (“once in a year one is allowed to go crazy” – only that it’s more like once a day for me). Caravan’s much celebrated coffee was the unexpected lowlight of my morning; an experience I would recall months later, when I first visited Workshop in Farringdon (where coffee tasted too aggressively bitter for my buds, much in the same way as Caravan’s).

Caravan King's Cross - espresso and pistachio and peach tart

More than one year after that visit, and many failed plans to return later, I finally managed to eat at Caravan again. I went with two colleagues, back from a meeting and on our way to another. We were sat at a sharing table within a couple of minutes of entering; a stroke of luck, for the place was packed and we hadn’t booked in advance. Being my office’s resident food authority, I didn’t have to battle to convince my colleagues to head to Caravan: all it took was the vague promise that the food was nice, and there would be wi-fi. That’s not to say I would encourage you to go there to get some work done, or book a table for a business lunch. In fact, I don’t. Caravan is made for leisurely, indulgent meals with your friends or family; with our buzzing laptops and fingers tapping manically on keyboards, we were the discordant note among a relaxed, informal clientele, of which all throughout my meal I wished I could be part (ah, the vain hope of having a Friday off work!).

The short window of time we had pressured me into choosing my food quickly, and I’m glad for that, as I could have spent an entire half hour perusing the menu. Caravan’s “small plates” selection offers an interesting pairing of soft shell crab and lentil dahl; “large plates” include potato gnocchi with wild mushrooms and Jerusalem artichoke cream. After long minutes of indecision, I trusted my first instinct, and went for pizza. Not a decision a native Italian with impossibly high standards takes lightheartedly, but sod it – the combination of provolone cheese, artichokes, new potatoes and rosemary sounded too good to say no to. And good it was, too. The dough was well cooked through, spread into a massive circle that brimmed over my plate; no match to the sourdough base you’d find at the likes of Franco Manca, or the thick, chewy crust that marks true Neapolitan pizza, but still the finest among the “non-authentic” pizzas I’ve had in London so far. Cheese oozed from all corners, with the delicate notes of artichokes and potatoes matching its smoky flavour perfectly. I didn’t taste much of the truffle oil, which felt about right, as one drop too many can turn a well balanced dish into overkill.

Caravan King's Cross - Provolone, artichoke, new potatoes, rosemary and truffle oil pizza

My meal was a rich, filling one, which I loved from the first to the last bite. Caravan was the beauty I remembered, and I can’t wait for a chance to visit again. I’ll leave my computer at home, though – I can think of many better lunch companions than my dreary work email inbox.

Caravan King’s Cross
Granary Building
1 Granary Square
London, N1C 4AA
(nearest tube station: King’s Cross St Pancras)Open 8.30am – 10pm Monday – Tuesday; 8am – 11pm Wednesday – Thursday; 8am – 12am Friday – Saturday; 10am – 4pm Sunday
020 7101 7661
http://caravankingscross.co.uk/

Caravan Kings Cross on Urbanspoon Square Meal

See the menu on Zomato

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Discussion

5 thoughts on “Restaurant review: Caravan, King’s Cross

  1. Looks really nice!

    Posted by MissLilly | January 18, 2015, 12:17 AM
  2. Oooooh, that provolone cheese, artichokes, new potatoes and rosemary pizza…! (Next time you go, try the brownie. It is hedonism on a plate!)

    Posted by Emma Julia | January 18, 2015, 7:09 PM

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