Sunday 6 June 2010

The Hawksmoor – The best steak in town?

It had been promised so. Rumours throughout the foodie land say that this is the one place for steak in London. Well, they actually say it’s the one place for burger in London, made from said steak…nevertheless, I was a little over excited as we made our way through the fading summer evening sunshine to lose our Hawksmoor virginity: I think I must be one of the last foodies in the South-East of England to do so, but following the trend has never been my thing!

A friendly welcome greeted us, and we were taken through the ‘font room’, which was open, light and airy to the rather darker, dimmer area at the back of the restaurant. The atmosphere was not, however, any less amiable and we quickly ascertained that the choice of sizes of steaks was from the chalkboard on the wall, and ranged from 750g to 1.1kg (just how big is that, we wondered…well, a pack of mince is 500g so we compared it to that!)

It took us less than 3 minutes to decide on food and wine, and after several recommendations from other Tweeps, we chose a 750g prime rib of beef on the bone, triple cooked chips, macaroni cheese, fried eggs and a portion of bone marrow, all to share. For starters, I opted for Yorkshire potted beef while the OH went for Tamworth Belly Ribs.











It began well: the water glasses were filled, the wine (a delicious £26 Rioja) poured and the starters polished off rather quickly. Sticky and full of meat, the ribs were incredibly tasty, and my potted beef was presented in its own little pot smeared over with butter and crispy bread. If anything, it lacked a little seasoning, something which wasn’t going to be repeated in the rest of the meal.




The piece de la resistance arrived in good time and looked delicious, just cooked to rare (if a little on the side of medium) and in a hot skillet. Side orders appeared simultaneously and we eagerly dug in.



As expected, the quality of the steak was superb and the smokiness and charring from the grill really expanded the flavours. Served in a little tin, the chips were also done to perfection; crispy on the outside while soft in the middle. As for the other side dishes, well, I don’t want to say it, but we were underwhelmed. Very.


The bone marrow was, admittedly, our own fault. We’d both been wanting to try it for ages, and, now the opportunity presented itself, we took it. It tasted very nice, but I couldn’t get over the jelly fat texture of it. As for the macaroni cheese and fried eggs…(takes a deep breath)…they were both hugely over-salted. And the mac cheese was also incredibly over-cooked and stodgy. I know you come to The Hawksmoor for the steak, and quite rightly so. Perhaps we should have stuck to chips and a green salad, but seasoning and cooking pasta is so easy to get right, I felt it let the meal as a whole down. A shame after all the hype I’d heard.

Would I return? Yes: I’d love to try the burger on the brunch menu, but would definitely stick to salad and chips. No extras.


157 Commercial Street
London E1 6BJ
020 7247 7392


1 comment:

  1. I was a bit disappointed by Hawksmoore too - the steak was excellent but the rest of it was a bit lacking. I also thought the portions were a bit stingy given the price. I had a similar starter to you and only got 2 tiny pieces of bread!


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