Set in an historic 18th Century warehouse near Liverpool Street, originally used by the East India Company, New Street Grill is a stylish contemporary restaurant, part of the D&D London restaurant group which is renowned for quality of food and service. As my dining companion and better half said, I can’t think of a D&D restaurant that I don’t like.
Service was indeed excellent from moment one. We were greeted at the door by Sean Gavin and Alexis Meszoly, the very personable Senior General Manager and Manager. They offered us both a delicious glass of champagne and gave us a tour of the warehouse, which not only houses the New Street Grill, but also the glamorous Bengal Bar, the light and airy seafood restaurant Fish Market and the buzzy wine and tapas bar New Street Wine. All of these we’d happily go back to and in fact my dining partner being a city boy freely admits that he regularly frequents the Fish Market and Wine Bar with discerning colleagues and clients.
Once seated at a large banquette style round table, which ensured space and privacy, we were put into the very capable hands of our friendly waiter and sommelier. Finishing off our champagne we were given a delicious amuse bouche of cured beef wrapped cucumber with truffle.
Our waiter kindly talked us through the menu, which is largely focused on meat from the Josper charcoal oven, but also contains some delicious sounding grilled fish dishes.
We chose a couple of starters to share. The dressed Cornish crab at £14.50 was exceptional. It was beautifully presented and extremely tasty. The Mozzarella with smoked leeks at £9.50 was also very good and both went very well with the glass of chilled Spanish chardonnay offered to us by the sommelier. Not to be forgotten is the freshly baked and very moreish sour dough and rosemary bread that accompanied our starters, together with some delicious fresh butter.
We couldn’t help but notice that the dining room had soon filled up with well-dressed and obviously contented diners – impressive for a cold and damp Tuesday evening in the City.
Starter plates almost scraped clean, we awaited the main course. Our knowledgeable waiter had suggested we should share the speciality Josper grilled rib-eye steak, which we even viewed before cooking. It was well marbled and when we next saw it the chef had cooked it to perfection and served with exceptionally fresh steamed spinach and cabbage with olive oil. Our only complaint – it was an extremely generous size for two people who’d probably slightly over indulged on Cornish crab! The accompanying béarnaise, peppercorn and red wine sauces came to the table in delightful miniature copper pans. At £45 for the two of us plus £4.50 for each side dish, it was a fair price of a main course of this quality.
Our reliable sommelier offered us a glass of Californian Cabernet Sauvignon We approached this suspiciously. Neither of us being fans of New World wines. But the champagne and wine pairing so far had been without fault so we went ahead. Although probably not converted to the New World, we agreed that this particular full-bodied wine did work well with the steak.
The dessert menu offered a wide selection of creative sweet treats as well as ice creams and sorbets starting a £6.00. Neither of us have a very sweet tooth and by this stage in this fabulous dining experience had much space to spare, so sadly we skipped dessert but finished with a very good coffee and a contented smile.
Executive Head Chef, Lawrence Keogh, with his background at Roast, Kensington Place, Quo Vadis and the Wolseley has certainly brought skill and flair to the Bengal Warehouse kitchen and we’ll certainly go back for more and would recommend Barbican readers to do the same.