London’s Best Steak and Chips
Just Opened London’s ‘Best of’ series covers a combination of recently opened venues and established London favourites, to make sure you get the full lowdown on where to spend your time and hard-earned cash.
When you can’t decide what to have for dinner (‘I had sushi for lunch’, ‘wherever you want to go is fine’, ‘but not there’), steak and chips will usually please everyone that eats meat. London carves up the good stuff in abundance. Whether you fancy full on rib-eye and triple cooked chips or classic steak frites, here are London’s best for steak and chips.
Foxlow is closely linked to its Hawksmoor big brother, but it’s an entirely different offering. They’ve dubbed it their ‘neighbourhood restaurant’ and it’s not quite that – it’s too slick to feel like a local bistro. It’s too expensive for a casual mid-week dinner. However, it is excellent.
The new Soho location is beautifully decked out and it’s no surprise the quality of the food is fantastic. If you fancy a great steak but everyone else is up for a bit more choice, Foxlow is a winner. Steak and chips is one of the most reasonably priced dishes on the menu.
Foxlow, 8-10 Lower James Street, W1F 9EL; also in Clerkenwell and Balham.
The window of Macellaio RC on Exmouth Market looks like a tableau for a meaty Punch and Judy show. Butchery takes centre stage, with different cuts dangling on hooks. It’s over the top. It’s brash. This is a go-big-or-go home kind of restaurant. But the meat is worth every little bit of theatre and drama.
Potatoes are roasted, rather than chipped, as is the Italian way (and who are we to argue with roast potatoes?) and a new branch has just opened in Battersea. Make sure you go hungry.
Macellaio RC, 124 Northcote Rd, SW11 6QU; also in Farringdon, Kensington and London Bridge.
Of course Hawksmoor are on the list. They’re undoubtedly the best steak offering in London. But it’s not just the steak that earns them a place on this list. It’s the chips. Oh goodness, the chips. You can opt for beef dripping, or triple cooked, or if you’ve any sense, a portion of both to share.
Every detail at Hawksmoor is considered; nothing is an afterthought. If it’s on your table, it’s as good as the steak they’re famous for. That’s why it’s great.
The newest offering in Borough Market isn’t our favourite – art deco Air Street still wins by a mile – but you know whichever branch of Hawksmoor you go to, you’re in for a cracking evening.
Hawksmoor, 16 Winchester Walk, SE1 9AQ. Also in Spitalfields, Piccadilly and Covent Garden.
Beef and Brew
Every other week there’s a new opening in Kentish Town. Beef and Brew is only a year old and it’s doing absolutely everything right (not least providing a viable dinner option before a gig at the nearby Forum). If you’re an early bird, steak and chips will cost you a tenner.
We’re excited about the steak but the snacks have our full attention: brisket nuggets and pigs cheeks on toast? Stop flirting with us. Sauces are fancier than your usual peppercorn, too: choose from chimichurri, truffle bearnaise or a stout and treacle gravy. Don’t drink the gravy.
Beef & Brew, 323 Kentish Town Road, NW5 2TJ
Aberdeen Angus Steakhouse
Flat Iron keep things no-frills. It’s £10 for a steak and salad, and an extra £2.25 for chips. It’s another quid for various sauces, take them or leave them. That’s it. If you don’t like steak, go elsewhere. We do like it.
Of all of the one-note restaurants in London, Flat Iron get it bang on: delicious, simple, cheap. It’s no reservations, of course, but get there early and the wait is reasonable. Or have a fancy lunch instead of your usual Pret sandwich.
Flat Iron, 9 Denmark St, Soho, WC2H 8LS. Also in Shoreditch, Covent Garden and Westbourne Park.
Le Relais de Venise
The classic. Nothing about Relais de Venise has changed in the last decade. The menu is the same, the steak frites are the same, the secret sauce still remains a secret. £24 gets you a small salad starter and steak frites (with seconds – please pile our plates high with more frites than is good for us). The no reservations Marylebone restaurant has a queue around the street but you can book a table at the Soho branch and save yourself a lot of hungry waiting.
Relais de Venise, 120 Marylebone Lane, W1U 2QG and 50 Dean St, Soho, W1D 5BQ
Those of you who baulked at the idea of Hawksmoor being the best steak restaurant in London may well have done so because you favour Goodman. We understand. The steak is incredible here too.
They’re fanatical about sourcing, buying the best from American and UK breeders and ageing it on-site in their magnificent, custom built ageing rooms. They’re so proud of their meat, in fact, they bring it to your table to show you how wonderful it is before they’ve even cooked it.
What arrives back at the table is a piece of steak with an intensely savoury charred crust, perfect for dipping into their legendary Stilton sauce. Oh, and if you miss the chips dusted with truffle and Parmesan then you are failing at life.
Goodman, 24-26 Maddox Street, W1S 1QH; 11 Old Jewry, EC2R 8DU; and 3 South Quay, E14 9RU