The Plough Bar and Kitchen, 89 St John’s Hill, SW11

This is a new addition to the Clapham scene which opened in late 2011. It is on the ground floor of a new residential development on the intersection between St John’s Hill and Plough Lane, just a short hop from Clapham Junction.

It’s got a warehouse feel to it with the visible air conditioning pipes and vents in the ceiling, but it’s also got a retro vibe with the eclectic mix of reconditioned vintage chairs, tables and lamps.

Both times I have been there has been a DJ who has been playing music fitting to the time of the week – Friday night commercial R&B and hip hop, Sunday night old school classics. It covers a large area, and on both visits there has been a good atmosphere created by lots of drinkers and diners, but there’s always been somewhere to sit (something that is becoming increasingly important the older I get).

The service is a little odd. On my first visit the bar was empty, and yet it still took the barman a good while to make his way from the other end of the bar to take my order. On my second visit our waitress really looked like she’d had enough, eye contact was lacking and a smile was a rarity. However, I do still like the place.

They have what they describe as an Anglo-American menu which consists of small plates, and a few (six when we went) mains. We opted to go for a selection of the smaller plates. Between two of us we had macaroni cheese, Scotch Angus sliders, crab and mango salad and a poached hen’s egg on a bubble and squeak cake. Everything was very tasty. The macaroni cheese was cooked in an individual Le Creuset style pot, the two little sliders were, surprisingly, still pink in the middle and the hen’s egg came with a drizzle of truffle oil.

I like eating in this way as all of these dishes as main courses, I find, get a bit samey when you’re half way through. On the flip side, sometimes it’s hard to judge how much to order so that you’re full. Four small plates didn’t really satisfy us, we had to order another macaroni cheese and then a sticky toffee pudding to round it all off. We ended up spending about £30 on food, which in the grand scheme of things is about the same as having two gastro-pub main courses, so this didn’t seem too bad for what we had. Perhaps the small plates are better suited to ordering to accompany a drink rather than as a meal in itself.

Overall, as I’ve said, I like the place and I’d go back.