London is filled with restaurants of all cuisines - you can find everything from thai and indian through to ethiopian or moroccan - but sometimes you just can't beat a bit of British.
British cooking to me means one thing. Meat. I love big, comforting plates of honest food - whether that comes in the form of beef, pork, lamb or chicken. I'm a meat & veg girl through and through so when I was recently invited down to The Grill on the Market, near Smithfields market - one look at the menu and I knew I'd love it.
Grill on the Market is a restaurant from the Blackhouse group. They've got restaurants across the country in Chester, Glasgow, Leeds and Manchester and the site at Smithfeilds market is its only London outpost. Blackhouse are all about no-nonsense, honest and simple cooking and that's exactly what they serve up.
We wanted to make sure we tried as much of the menu as possible so we ordered the Blackhouse Sharing Plate (£15.75) which allows you to try four starter dishes for a very reasonable price.
Honey glazed chicken skewers, salt and pepper calamari, BBQ ribs and baked sweet potato wedges. All served withthree dips - BBQ, Aioli and a mint & coriander creme fraiche.
Squid has a tendency to be cooked to the point of tasting like rubber in lots of places but GoTM got it just right. Perfectly cooked in a light batter which sung when dunked in the garlic-y mayonnaise.
There's a choice of two sauces so we went with the cream and white wine option (£7.75) which was gorgeous - if a touch under seasoned, but a good squeeze from the lemon provided on our sharing platter totally took it up a gear.
Make sure you order some bread as the sauce is just dying to be mopped up once you've eaten the mussels. I even drained the whole bowl with a spoon once the bread was gone...
For main courses we both went for rib-eyes. Rib-eye steak is by far my favourite cut - it's covered in fatty marbling which creates a rich, beefy flavour. This cut of steak is best medium-rare as it allows the fat to melt slightly and all the flavour to be absorbed - when cooked right, it tastes incredible.
Tom kept it fancy by adding a skewer of garlic king prawns (£5) to go with his steak and I chose a Béarnaise sauce (£2.25), which tasted so good I could have drank it straight from the jug. (I didn't but you know I totally would've)
Side orders of roasted field mushrooms (£3.25), green vegetables (£3.75) and onion rings (£3) set off our meal perfectly.
By this point we'd eaten a lot of food. But I couldn't leave without pudding. and things definitely kicked up a gear when it came to desserts.
Sticky Toffee Pudding and Pavlova are my favourite desserts (not counting Banoffee Pie of course) and here they both were on the menu. It took very little persuasion to get Tom to share both with me...along with a bottle of Picpoul (£26).
If you go, I urge you to order the sticky toffee....
Served piping hot with cold vanilla ice cream it's gooey, sticky, warm and absolutely delicious. I almost wrestled Tom out the way so I could get a bite.The raspberry pavlova (£6.75) also did not disappoint. A GIANT meringue stuffed with fresh cream, raspberries, cherries and fruit couli. Wow. Just wow.
Big thank you to Kamil for arranging our dinner for us and to our waitor Joe for looking after us brilliantly on the night!
Grill on the Market
2-3 W Smithfield, London EC1A 9JX
2-3 W Smithfield, London EC1A 9JX
* Tom & I were guests of GoTM. Our food & drink was comped but opinions are my own