Beer-led restaurant Wahleeah to launch in Fulham

By Lauren Houghton contact

- Last updated on GMT

Wahleeah will be chef Dave Ahern's first restaurant
Wahleeah will be chef Dave Ahern's first restaurant

Related tags: Caesar salad, Food

Chef Dave Ahern will open his first restaurant Wahleeah early next year in London’s Fulham.

Wahleeah will be an all-day dining restaurant situated on Fulham High Street close to Putney Bridge station.

It will have 70 covers inside and an outdoor decking area which can sit a further 40 people. The restaurant will also have a bar with a separate bar menu available.

Wahleeah will not serve a particular country’s cuisine, but instead Ahern, who previously ran pop-up concept Burger Breakout, has put together a menu with craft beer incorporated into each dish.  

“There’s a huge explosion in craft beers in London, and I believe the British palate developed a love for food alongside a taste for beer,” Ahern told BigHospitality.

The menu

The restaurant’s menu has been divided into small plates, large plates, brunch, sandwiches and salads.

“Every dish will be cooked using various beers,” explained Ahern. “We will take dishes that people know, for example something as simple as a Caesar salad, and add a homemade IPA Caesar dressing to it.

“If you think that being cooked in beer has to mean heavy and wintery type food, it doesn’t. Everything that we’re doing is designed to enhance beer.”

The menu will include dishes such as whole bream with beer braised fennel and crayfish mash, tuna meatloaf with polenta nicoise and bloody beer sauce, and 42-day-aged rib-eye with beer fondant potatoes and brocolli and stout steak sauce.

Desserts available will include chocolate stout brownie with beer ice cream, and porter cheese cake with chili sauce.

Adaptable concept

Ahern intends for the menu to change and develop depending on the season and food trends.

“I think the concept allows us to adapt to people’s change in taste,” he said. “If, for example, there’s a big explosion in German food, then we can get some German beers and come up with dishes to go with it.”

The focus on beer will also allow customers to match their drinks to their food easily. The restaurant will have no wine list, but instead sell one red, one white and one rosé wine by the glass. However, its menu will recommend craft beers which go well with each dish.

“At the moment, when someone goes to dinner with three friends, they’ll order one bottle between them,” said Ahern. “The odds of that bottle matching all four dishes are low. Whereas if each of them orders an individual bottle of beer, their choices can go perfectly with each dish.”

Going the extra mile

Ahern also intends to make every ingredient in-house, including salt, flour and cheese.

“I’ve spent the last four months giving everyone I know cheese to try while I develop a range,” he said. “It includes bacon cheese, black garlic cheese, horseradish cheese, and piri piri cheese.”

“I want our diners to come and get a great plate of food, and realise if they want it again they’ll have to come back, because nowhere else goes the extra mile to make it like we do.”

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