Address: 10 Market Row, Brixton SW9 8LD
Phone: 07713 322507
Monday – Closed
Tuesday – Thursday 11.30am – 10pm
Friday 11.30am – 11pm
Saturday 10am – 11pm
Sunday 10am – 10pm
We can still just remember Brixton’s last pie and mash shop (where Nanban is now), although there are still examples of the real thing in other parts of London. The nostalgia can be overdone, as the meat filling could sometimes be questionable and the ‘liquor’ watery. But now Brixton has gained a ‘new-wave’ pie shop, in the form of a branch of a chain going by the name Pieminister. Prepare yourself for some rather feeble puns.We went soon after it opened for an early evening meal. This is in the premises that were yet another burger place, the Bukowski Grill, which we reviewed not unfavourably but never went back. So no great loss. As a pie shop it is sufficiently different to most other Brixton eateries to offer an additional choice. Inside it’s much the same, with bare tables and hard chairs.
Obviously we had pies but I couldn’t resist trying the pork scratchings with apple sauce as an appetiser. There are other “small plates”.
When you come to the pies there’s a choice of 14 recipes, including vegetarian options, plus 4 “skillets” that are effectively pastry-less pies. We went for pies of course, choosing a “Kate & Sidney” (beef steak, kidney and craft ale) and a “matador” (beef steak, chorizo, olive and butter bean). Both were tasty enough, with good flaky pastry, although it was hard to distinguish any kidney. Both came as part of a deal, Kate and Sydney perched on top of a splodge of mashed potato plus lashings of beef and port gravy; and the Matador was accompanied by a good sized portion of skin on fries with rosemary salt.
The mashed potato was “excellent” as described by my fellow diner, who is an undoubted mashed potato connoisseur. You can spot the rosemary on the chips in the picture but the taste was harder to detect. But they were good chips, crisp and obviously made from real potatoes. For those like me who love chorizo the matador was a good choice. All this was quite enough to feed us for an evening but the puddings, including sticky toffee, looked tempting but we had no space to even contemplate ordering.
We had bottles of the house Cubic Pie IPA and a Freedom Pilsner. There’s also tea & coffee, milk shakes, soft drinks, wine and a handful of cocktails. But having a cocktail with pie & mash just seems wrong.
The total bill came to £27.70 before adding service. This isn’t bad for an evening meal in Brixton and it’s the cost of the drinks (£4.80 and £4.40 respectively) that puts up the overall price. For lunch, where you might just want a pie and a pot of tea, it comes out at well under a tenner.