Glass discovers a gastropub gem at The Coach Makers Arms, Marylebone

AS the latest addition to Cubitt House’s portfolio of elegant pubs, including The Thomas Cubitt and The Orange, The Coach Makers Arms had a lot to live up to. It certainly delivered with a deliciously seasonal menu, charming atmosphere and truly exceptional service.

Tucked between Marylebone’s quaint streets lined with delicatessens and vintage barbers, The Coach Makers Arms glowed with the promise of a cosy evening. As we approached the magnificent three storey building we could see a riotously cheerful crowd packing the ground floor pub before ascending the stairs to the airier restaurant of the second floor. A completely different atmosphere greeted us – gentle chatter, floor-to-ceiling antique windows and the gilded portraits of the great and good from a time before gastropubs.

However, the welcome was just as warm as downstairs with the most friendly and attentive staff eager to share stories of the recent launch. Wine top-ups happened magically. The mixologists offered us a tour of The 72, their basement cocktail bar. Even the staff on break outside stopped for a chat. It felt like a friendly neighbourhood pub, with hospitality so remarkable I’m even mentioning it before the food.

Coachmakers diningrmThe light and airy dining room

Which was delicious by the way. Hearty, satisfying, traditional pub grub with a twist. The seasonality and local sourcing of food shone through with the most succulent chicken breasts and exquisite Jerusalem artichokes. Their farm-to-plate ethos was evident in the tasting. I had a delicate cured salmon and salmon rilette to start, Castlemead chicken with salt-baked celeriac, satsuma & almond jus for mains and finished with a decadent Chocolate Pot with plum compote and cocoa nibs. No limping across the finishing line with a menu this good.

Coachmakers chocThe divine Chocolate Pot

My carefully chosen vegetarian accomplice enjoyed a starter of Jerusalem artichokes with sunflower seeds, kale and truffle dressing and a main of Crown prince pumpkin with chestnut granola, ricotta dumplings and sage brown butter. He capped it all off with a generous cheeseboard with quince, grapes and biscuits, making me feel considerably less guilty about the night’s choices. As I said, carefully chosen. The star of the show was undoubtedly the Jerusalem Artichokes, a handsome, smoky delight of a dish.

Overall, The Coach Makers Arms provides all you could need for an evening’s entertainment, from soul-nourishing food to a convivial ambience. Start with an aperitif in the ground floor, make your way upstairs for a heavenly feast, then descend into Dante’s depths with a couple of Georgia Mint Juleps in the basement cocktail bar. It wears destination pub lightly, but well.

by Lucy Wai

The The Coach Makers Arms, 88 Marylebone Lane, W1U 2PY

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