I used to be a Wandsworth girl, but am ashamed to say I wasn’t aware of having a local lust-list of restaurants (except Chez Bruce of course, which sadly, despite living around from the corner, has eluded me in all my 24 years!). In fact, I’ll admit that the only reason I knew of Out of the Blue’s existence was because a colleague wanted to borrow my Tastecard to go somewhere (“anywhere”) in Clapham Junction. As well as being “Out of the Blue” it is a little bit out of the way – a 10 minute walk from Clapham Junction – and in a small stretch of restaurants on St John’s Hill that you have to be fairly clued up to know about (or maybe I just lived at the wrong end of Wandsworth).
But this is a real hidden gem. Whilst the decor is simplistic, it retains some understated elegance. You can see that this place converts well from a sunny lunch spot, to a low-lit dinner (all with a few tea-lights) which still gives a feeling of intimacy.
The menu is also pretty interesting, and very global. Usually I’d be dubious of this jack-of-all-trades approach, but the menu is also fairly streamlined (12 mains total) and the dishes I sampled were all hearty, authentic and delicious. Between myself and my dining companion we spanned the culinary globe, from France (moules in a white wine sauce and wonderfully salted fries) to Morocco (rich red hummus with seeded flatbread), over to the States (prawn and chorizo jambalaya) and finally India for curry (what else!).
Each night features a special starring a different main, and we took advantage of the Early Bird Offer, giving us two courses each for £13.50. If you’re going straight a la carte, you can also use your TasteCard. All in all, that makes the evening extremely reasonable. In fact, I’d consider the menu incredibly reasonably priced anyway considering the size of the portions, and the calibre of the food. Out of the Blue won’t be entering the Michelin guide, but the food does hit the spot.
Out of the Blue bar and kitchen
140 St Johns Hill
London SW11 1S