Review by Paul Nelson
CLAPHAM Junction they say is the busiest railway station in the country if
not the world. Unlike large foreign stations however, finding food that isn't
fast is an impossibility.
Railway stations abroad, and I must disregard the ultra smart Oyster Bar in Grand Central Station, New York, are particularly in any city in Denmark, the best and cheapest place to eat if stranded or you arrive starving. These are State owned restaurants and The Junction just hasn't got it. In Denmark, they are clean; the food is good and the service remarkable.
However, for travellers to this part of south London there is not only hope but actual salvation. Leave the station by the main entrance, turn right and on your right is The Windsor Castle roughly 50 yards away.
Here you will find the aforementioned remarkable service in an attractive and excellently run bar, and all the food you can eat at a fraction of the price anywhere else.
Assuming that a pint is £2 (and where is that in Clapham Junction?) The Windsor Castle will feed you right royally for less than that modest price. If you want to go one better and are really hungry, you can exceed the £2, but still everything is less than the price of two pints.
Did I say everything? There is one exception. There is the Mega Mixed Grill. This consists of rump steak, sausage, gammon steak, lamb cutlet, two eggs and tomato, and the price is £4.99. Everything else comes under my two-pint rule.
And the food is excellent. Arriving starving I had the Biggest Breakfast, and for £3.99 that was 3 sausages, 3 rashers of bacon, 2 eggs, tomato and baked beans. It is one of their Belting Big Meals all of which come with a large portion of chips, and all of which are superb.
Under the heading Favourites you can have fish and chips (under a pint), there are Doorsteps (massive sandwiches), burgers, jacket potatoes with various toppings and you can Go Large for 99p (any two additional vegetables) or choose and add various side orders for around 30p each.
You have a choice of eleven main courses (£2.99 to £3.49) and filled Giant Yorkshire Puddings. To round off the meals on Sunday you can even have a less than two-pint traditional Sunday Lunch.
There is even a small but pleasant choice of desserts and coffee or tea.
After all that, washed down with some excellently kept beers, spend the rest of the afternoon watching football on a giant screen.
I have to say I am becoming quite a regular.
The Windsor Castle. St John's Hill, Clapham Junction. Major Credit cards accepted.