With Shoreditch being my usual weekend hangout, I tend to always stick to the places I’ve already been, so it is always exciting to discover somewhere new where you can not only get an amazing meal but also have a round (or 2) of incredible drinks afterwards.
McQueens is best known for its lively bar and electric ambience in the heart of trendy Shoreditch but what some don’t know is that behind this busy, upbeat space is The Grill at McQueen. This restaurant is primarily famous for their mouth-watering steaks with iconic images of the ‘King of Cool’ Steve McQueen spread across the walls.
Once we were sat down we had the difficult task of first picking a drink and then our starter and mains. We started with some cocktails which were full of flavour and definitely enough alcohol. This place sure knows how to make a brilliant cocktail!
I decided, being in a restaurant known for their steaks, I was going to have to go for the double beef option. So I started with the classic steak tartar served with sourdough toast. Steak tartar is my new favourite starter so I was extremely excited for this and it looked like it was going to be a good one when it was put down in front of me by our lovely waiter. My expectations were met, the tartar was oozing with all different flavours from the egg yolk, capers and different spices used to season. Served with the fluffy sourdough, this was the perfect start to my beef-led meal.
My guest, after much deliberation between the pork belly and the crispy lamb bites went for the latter. These were crispy and golden on the outside with a soft centre. It was also served with a creamy dip though we were not quite sure what this sauce exactly was – it was delicious anyway!
Moving onto our mains; whenever I can, I will always opt for the fillet. So it was no surprise when I chose the 300g 28 days dry-aged fillet with bearnaise sauce. The steak was cooked medium rare as requested and the meat was tender, full of flavour and absolutely flawless. It was more than a generous portion and I was struggling to finish which does not often happen to me.
My guest went for the sirloin, cooked rare and he decided he wanted to try something a little different to his usual peppercorn sauce so choose the Stilton hollandaise sauce. He was pleased, as was I, that he was adventurous, because this sauce was absolutely incredible. There was a wonderful balance of the Stilton and hollandaise and although strong in flavour, it was perfect for the sirloin.
When it comes to the sides, I am all about ‘the more the merrier!’ So with that in mind we decided to share triple-cooked chips, field mushrooms and steamed spinach (to add to the colour palette of the plate of course). The chips were some of the best chips I have ever had, they were chunky and fluffy and so flavoursome. As soon as I ate one I immediately regretted not ordering a portion for myself, but I knew I would be so full by the end of the meal. The mushrooms were again some of the tastiest I have ever had. They were meaty and seasoned to perfection. Leaving the steamed spinach which was just as it said on the tin but I think its always necessary to have a bit of green on my plate – even if just for the decoration!
Nearly bursting at the seems we found just enough room to share a dessert – because there is always room to be found for something sweet! We went for the white chocolate cheesecake which was definitely worth the struggle. The baked cheesecake was rich and creamy and accompanied by some sour cherries. All the flavours married together perfectly and it was an amazing last taste to a delicious and very satisfying meal.
After our meal we headed to the bar for some more cocktails. The atmosphere was electric with everyone in good spirits and the music creating the perfect vibe. Overall it was a fabulous evening filled with cocktails and meat – what could be better?! I would highly recommend The Grill at McQueen, even if Shoreditch is not your local, it’s worth venturing out for.
The Grill at McQueen
55-61 Tabernacle Street London, Shoreditch EC2A 4AA