Chill on the Hill, Harrow
Chill on the Hill is actually comprised of two premises. While the cooking for both occurs in the smaller shop that fronts as both a diner and a takeaway (see above), the hub of its operation is located just across the road. Although Chill on the Hill offers a fairly extensive menu, it isn’t the food that’s their main attraction, but the shisha. And though there’s to be found a small dining room conveniently separated from both the open wooden seating deck situated at the front of the shop, as well as one currently under renovation at the back, it’s apparent that this plays second fiddle to the shisha.
(DISCLAIMER) Be that as it may, we were here, of course, only to sample what’s conspicuously Halal: the food and beverage!
We started with a mixed platter comprising of an assortment of meats beautifully put together and presented as a jumbo platter that included lamb chops, BBQ and standard chicken wings, lamb and chicken mishkakis, chicken strips, standard curly fries (cheesy and chilli also available), and strips of naan.
As a point of notice, it was concerning that this platter didn’t quite reach us sizzling hot as one would hope for. Unfortunately, this was also true of everything else that was served. Now, this could be down to two logistical oversights. The first, in our opinion, is unforgivable, and that’s the cold metal platter on which everything was served. The second could be down to the time it takes to transport the food from the kitchen across the road to our table, which, on a cold evening, will certainly have an adverse effect. The first is easily rectifiable; the second, however, not so much so.
As to the food, then the two really stood out for us were the lamb mishkakis and the chicken strips. The former had a far stronger and tastier marinade than any of the other selection of meats, while the latter were beautifully crispy and golden on the outside, and tender and succulent on the inside. As for the rest, then they were all perfectly acceptable. Delicately seasoned and reasonably well cooked, most people would happily devour these without writing home about them. If we did have a complaint, it was that the lamb chops were slightly too chewy.
An honest home-made burger with the usual sauces (though the chicken seemed slightly overcooked and, thus, fairly tough and chewy). Two things of note:
1) The buns are certainly worth a mention – beautifully cooked with an ever so slightly crispy exterior, and a hint of a vinegary taste running through it;
2) the turkey rashers were flavoursome and helped elevate these somewhat.
We were recommended the steak and that’s what we decided on. While this certainly hit the high taste notes with a nice and crispy baguette along with the mustard adding a tangy undertone, unfortunately the steak, cut a little too thick in places, was far too chewy.
Four sources were presented: 1) their signature, 2) Pili Pili Chilli, 3) garlic, 4) standard chilli. Although we were told that the signature took a whole day to produce, neither it nor the others really wowed us.
These took us back to our schooldays. Not many restaurants tend to offer slushes do they? Didn’t quite live up to the incredible taste we remember from our teenage years, but that could be due to 1) the relatively cold evening, and 2) a maturation of our palates. :-) Seriously speaking, the Grenadine didn’t quite deliver on the tarty sweet flavour you’d expect, and the same could be said of the strawberry too. The only one that did was the mango, which, with its slightly sour note, certainly wasn’t made from the sweet variety found in the Indo-Pak region. And the reason for the disparity was perhaps down to the fact that while the first two were seemingly prepared using syrup flavour, where the correct ratio between the syrup and crushed ice wasn’t quite achieved, the mango, with its far thicker viscosity, was probably made from its pulp.
Apparently, the Red Velvet Cheesecake (right) was a popular crowd-pleaser, and we can see why. Although delicious, it was, however, slightly on the heavy side with its delicately flavoured sponge middle. Nonetheless, it wasn’t overly sweet, certainly not like the Oreo Chessecake (left). This was luxurious and chocolatey, and needed the cream on the side to temper its richness.
As for the freshly made vanilla ice cream (centre), then it was subtle in taste, though slightly on the icy side for our personal liking.
Feed the Lion has a policy of not reviewing places where the main focus revolves around that which we consider to be religiously forbidden. However, in the case of Chill on the Hill, we unanimously decided that since it operated two separate and distinct premises, it was justified to review them on the basis of their shisha-free diner/restaurant, which offered exactly the same menu as that available across the road at the shisha lounge.
- NO/ NO (SHISHA)
- CHILD SEATING
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382 – 384 Station Road,
T: +44 (0)20 8861 2334 | W: www.chillonthehill.com