The Wether Report: Lord Moon of the Mall
Welcome to the Wether Report: Your Guide to Wetherspoons throughout the UK
Overall Rating: 6/10
Situated a stones throw away from London’s Trafalgar Square, the Lord Moon of the Mall welcomes you with an abundance of hanging flower baskets partnered with grand arched windows. As you walk through the doors you’re greeted with a bright and bold reception littered with chairs and nattering people which all good wetherspoons seem to capture upon first arrival.
Typical wetherspoon lighting brings a sense of familiarity; dark corners filled with girls telling each other about their latest boy troubles contrasted with the stark, extreme lit area where the locals congregate as they order the ‘usual’ in their personalised pint glasses as they prop themselves up against the bar.
The tall ceilings represent the buildings previous life; an old, grand bank, which brings a sense of nostalgia of the beauty it once was. Borderline disgusting patterned carpet flows throughout the venue, dripping down the stairs to the basement, accompanied by deep mahogany wood work holding the entire structure together; a familiar spoons with a sense of history. Good marks so far.
The beauty of spoons, and the measure of a good one, is it’s effortless simplicity. And that, normally, includes the name. It took me several google searches and various attempts of guessing to try and remember the name of this pub. Call me slow (which many do) but the name simply doesn’t roll of the tongue and doesn’t compute well in my head.
I know the word ‘moon’ is frequented in many a spoons and is an essential part of the J.D. Wetherspoon empire and is taken from George Orwell’s essay about his favourite pub the ‘Moon Under Water’. However, is the name too long?
In my opinion, yes.
I had inadvertently dragged my school best friend to the pub and she found herself being granted chief partner in crime on my mission to find what the UK’s wetherspoons have to offer. We scoped out the room to find a seat, weaving in and out of the crowd hoping someone would soon leave so we could chuck our heavy bags on the floor when a perfect table for two appeared right in the corner.
The room was buzzing with laughter and chatter, which brought an instant feeling of relaxation and calm. Although the tables were packed like sardine, once seated you felt the surrounding clattering softened, and you were able to lose yourself in conversation.
I do like a dark pub; candle light that covers a multitude of sins is often how I judge a pub when I’m looking for that mid-week winter drink.
First things first; the wine. Now, I am used to asking for the house wine in bars and restaurants, as I am a true believer in wines selected by the owners to accompany their menus and aesthetics.
Yet, something didn’t feel quite right when I asked the barman for a bottle of their House White…. Especially when his answer was ‘Pinot Grigio or Chardonnay, luv?’. Anyway, I glossed over my ridiculous question and his humorous answer and went for the Pinot; chilled with two glasses.
I sat down, wine in hand we both complimented the taste; neither dry nor sweet, but a really nice simple, crisp wine. Excellent start.
After some wedding chat (my best friend is getting hitched in September) we grabbed a menu and became fixated on our stomachs. We decided to chose two mains to share, one of the spoons specials; Peri Peri Chicken with Hot Sauce, Coleslaw and Chips, and the Club House Beef Burger with Stilton and Bacon (and all the trimmings). We’re not the shy and retiring type, so when we go to spoons, we go large. (Some might simply call it being two fat b*tches, but they are just jealous.)
Food ordered, bums on seats we continued our chit chat. I noticed, it was possibly one of the first wetherspoons I had been in for a while, where my jumper sleeve didn’t stick to the table, or a lonely chip and mayonnaise didn’t welcome me as I sat down to my table. This pub was clean.
Another thumbs up.
Food arrived suspiciously quick, in fact it was plonked in front of me minutes since my order. The classic spoons error. However after some frowning and ‘hmmmm’ we decided we were too hungry to complain, and began to stick in.
The chicken was really tasty however it was dry, lukewarm and a little tough for my liking. The hot sauce it came with was spot on – smooth, spicy with that kick of sour peppers and chili. Simply perfect. We sliced the burger in half and took a bite. This was by far the best bit for me. The bun was wholemeal, which for many wouldn’t be ideal, but for me was exactly what I wanted. There was a thin layer of relish, generous portion of dark green salad leaves and then came the beef burger and stilton sauce. It was all as delicious as it sounds.
Both dishes were served with larger than life chips, which tasted like potato smiley faces – in my books that’s a good thing.
Overall the food was ok – dry yet flavoursome.
After our beige plates were emptied and the jolly waiters collected them from our table, we washed the stodge away with the remainder of our wine and realised we needed a loo run before heading to Victoria station. Tucked in the basement the toilets were modern, clean and smelt pretty dam good.
The toilet seat was a little wonky, but for the first time in a long while there was no piss on the seat.
A pretty good wee on all accounts.
The staff at this pub were an absolute delight. Friendly, tentative and quick service. A final thumbs up.
Where can you find this pub?
16-18 Whitehall, London SW1A 2DY, website here.