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36-37 Greenhill Rents
020 3589 4526
This is where Mark Hix first got going under his own steam back in 2008 and, a shed load of oysters later, it’s still a useful address by Smithfield Market. The space is simple enough, a British brasserie if you like, and service can be “a little erratic to say the least” – although it’s never less than charming. Food-wise, it’s not all about Loch Ryan No 2s and Pyefleet Creek’s finest bivalves – the quality of the meat is also “superb” (try a whopping Moyallon pork ‘baron’ chop to share). Otherwise, char-grilled Torbay cuttlefish might turn up in a first-course salad, game is sure to figure in season, and eclectic dishes such as goat curry with rock samphire pakoras show the kitchen’s mettle. Well-reported Sunday lunches and Oyster Happy Hour (£1.25 oysters every day from 4-7pm) are added attractions, while cocktails and some compelling digestifs keep the party going.
To celebrate the Year of the Woman, SquareMeal is running a series of interview profiles with top female chefs. Read here about Marianne Lumb’s colourful career as a private chef and the benefits of operating one of London’s smallest kitchens.
New Years Eve Restaurants
36-37 Greenhill Rents
020 3589 4526
Barbican Station 201m
Farringdon Station 207m
Worshipful Company of Haberdashers 203m
Mon-Sun 12N-11pm (Sat 5pm- Sun -10pm)
Food & Drink:
Rate & Review
Food + drink: 4
Being located just off of Smithfield market you won't be surprised to hear that the quality of the meat was superb, without a doubt the tastiest roast beef we have ever had, accompanied by the crispiest, fluffiest roast potatoes and an enormous yorkshire pudding. My only gripe was that it was served as an inch thick slab of meat, I like my beef rare, but prefer it to be thinly carved, not a great big hunk of steak. The side of cauliflower cheese was, in my opinion, pretty light on the cheese sauce, so was quite dry. We started with the pork crackling and "heaven and earth", a stack of black pudding, mashed potatoes and apple sauce. We were served by a lovely young gentleman, very polite and well-spoken but he was a little erratic to say the least.
We ordered a bottle of wine and he poured us 3 glasses and then came running back to our table to take the glasses away because he had poured us another diner's wine from their bottle, not ours. We had 2 bottles of wine over the course of the meal and pretty much every time he poured a glass, half of it went on the tablecloth, and on one occasion, missed the glass and tablecloth and went in my handbag on the floor. They had a jazz band playing, which was nice and the restaurant was about half full, the last time we came we were the only two people in the restaurant.
My daughter had an hour and a half for lunch. i visited the restaurant 2o minutes early to explain the timing and was assured that there would be no problem having a relaxed meal in that time frame. It was not to be. Despite the fact that the restaurant was less than half full it was difficult to get attention and the food was very slow to arrive. In consequence i had to spend this important lunch checking : 'is the food coming now". It didn't make for a relaxing lunch and eventually my daughter had to leave after a hasty main course and with no time for desert, coffee or a spare moment. She had to leave me at the table to sort out the bill as she had to get back to work. This was avoidable if the Front Manager had properly briefed the staff [why I went there first to brief her]. And as for value for money £35 is a big price for a steak [albeit a very good one]. You just don't want to have to wait and then have to bolt this expensive fare. Could do so much better with the high quality location, restaurant, food and drink. Disappointing.
Food + drink: 5
Another excellent meal at Hix Smithfield. Back in the day, London used to be a tricky place to get a good steak. Nowadays we're spoilt for choice rather especially in the Smithfield area but Hix is a very safe bet. Faultless aparagus, poached eggs and potted shrimps prove that it's not just the carnivores that are looked after. One of my guests emailed me to say they ‘actually dreamt about that lamb chop it was so good!’ Service was friendly & efficient but marred by that annoying habit, sadly ubiquitous in London restaurants, of constantly over-filling our wine glasses. It's irritating to be harried onto that second bottle that we're never going to be ordering at lunchtime.
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