Ever since my friend Tania told me about her obsession with Welsh rarebit, it’s become an obsession of mine as well. If I see it on the menu I will always order it.
For those who did not grow up in the UK, Welsh rarebit is a cheesy sauce that is spread on top of bread and then toasted. There are a lot of variations so ordering it at different places means you’re going to get a different take on it each time. Generally it consists of: beer (an ale), mustard, Worcestershire sauce, and aged cheddar cheese. Sometimes it has cayenne pepper and sometimes paprika. It’s also sometimes served, topped with sliced tomato.
I was at St. John in Clerkenwell recently and of course they had Welsh rarebit and of course I ordered it. I have to say, considering I am amazed by everything I eat there, I was underwhelmed by it. The cheese was too nutty. I actually am not sure it was cheddar. I’m more a fan when it’s made with a strong aged cheddar. That and the bread it was served on was too soft and it just didn’t really hold up to the sauce.
Nevertheless, even an underwhelming Welsh rarebit is a good Welsh rarebit.