While the muted weekend sunlight nodded towards the promise of spring, Flame & Fire in Ealing proved that a roast is a good choice in all weathers. 

Outside, tall burners bring the restaurant’s name to life, yet inside, the interior is calming, inviting and nicely finished, with a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. 

Nestled only five minutes from South Ealing tube, the restaurant opened in earnest in late 2018 and has already attracted a strong foundation of regulars. Indeed, the function room was beginning to fill with party-goers as we were leaving. 

The menu promises ‘modern European food’ which is simplistic but flavoursome. But, it being Sunday after all, it would have been remiss to skip the roast on offer. 

Both starters were simple but delicious. Thick cut, almost steak-like, halloumi with marinated avocado, teeming with lashes of lime and chilli, was superb. These big flavours flowed into each other beautifully, yet it was also surprisingly light. 

Additionally, the pate was a good start to the meal. Though lacking an intense depth, it married nicely with the sweetness of the onion chutney and the crispness of the Turkish bread. 

The mains were robust, hearty examples of good roast cooking. The lamb was taken to the point where it flaked tenderly, as was the beef. Both of these locally-sourced joints had evidently been cooked lowly and slowly to enhance the flavour and this paid off. Underneath, a silky and subtly sweet puree tied the savouriness of the dish together. 

Hillingdon Times: The roasts were robust and heartyThe roasts were robust and hearty

The other sides, however, were slightly undercooked; the potatoes needed just a bit longer to crisp, while the carrots needed longer for the opposite reason. Both plates were crying out for a note of contrast - whether that was horseradish for the beef or mint for the lamb - but the overall effect was an undeniably rich plate of food, perfect for a Sunday afternoon. 

For dessert, a lemon cheesecake offered a light and palate cleansing note to end. The base could have been thicker - personal preference taking over here - but the topping was amicably smooth and vivid. Meanwhile, the chocolate ice cream was, well, good chocolate ice cream. 

Hillingdon Times: Lemon cheesecake was a good palate cleanserLemon cheesecake was a good palate cleanser

The restaurant’s regular a la carte menu has a good variety of dishes on offer for vegetarians and meat eaters alike. Mains vary from £12 through to a £40 côte de boeuf, while the starters, sides and desserts are similarly fair priced. There’s plenty of choice on the wine list, while there are also cocktails to be enjoyed on the restaurant’s well-placed sofas. 

The food isn’t revolutionary, but it is executed very well; it knows what pleases a diner and provides meals which carry heaps of hearty flavour. The service, too, is attentive, well-paced and warm. Spring may not have delivered quite yet, but Flame & Fire certainly did.