Tag Archives: Gordon Ramsay

Savoy Grill

6 Dec

You can often find me in a state of bewilderment and despair over my bank balance. I have no idea where the money goes, and before you say it I don’t seem to have any money even before I manage to sit down at a restaurant. This sorry state of affairs not only affects me but Mark as well as it means his restaurant plans are put on hold until I manage to scrape together a few pennies. However, his impatience often gets the better of him which results in an occassional treat for me.

That is why one nondescript Sunday morning Mark announced he had a treat in store because of my recent good behaviour. I begged him to let me know what it was but he refused and even suggested this treat had nothing to do with food. Because of this I said we may as well leave a bit earlier than he had originally planned so that we could get a quick bite to eat beforehand. We walked around Covent Garden and Soho for about an hour and a half to my cries of ‘I’m tiiiirrreeeeed’ and ‘I want my treaaaaaat’ before we appeared at the front of the Savoy and Mark admitted the treat was indeed something to do with food.

I had wanted to go to the Savoy Grill as soon as it reopened. Despite lacklustre reviews, there is something about the old style dining and vast menu which includes a lunch trolley that appealed to me. I didn’t think Mark was that keen, often using the phrase ‘rip off’ when I mentioned it, but it was clear to me why his views had changed once we were handed over the menus – one a la carte, the other a cheapy weekend menu. I knew which one I would be ordering from (I’m not complaining, it was a lovely treat for Mark to have organised).

We were seated at a table that was considerably higher than our seats which made me feel like a little girl sat in a restaurant for grown ups. Had the chairs been a little higher it is fairly likely I would still feel like a little girl sat in a restaurant for grown ups. The diners were of three sorts. The first and biggest percentage were of the traditional and flashy well off sort, the kind of person I will never be. The second lot were from the school of blue rinse, having the kind of restaurant experience I imagine they had when they were young. The final sort were the dutiful children now in their 30’s treating their mothers to a birthday lunch which the mothers were all dutifully enjoying.

Mark and I both ordered the same starter and main. Bubble and Squeak with Burford Brown Egg and Salt Cured Pigs Cheeks to begin. I know it said ‘salt cured’ but I rather enthusiastically imagined the pigs cheeks to be soft lumps of meat. More fool me, it was just a bit of crispy bacon. I love egg, I love bubble and squeak. I didn’t love this dish so much as it completely lacked seasoning leaving it bland mound of texture.

Running with the theme of pig and potato, our main was Potato and Bacon Pie with Tarragon Cream, French Beans and Shallots. Our beans didn’t arrive until we were half way through our pies. Well, they initially were placed on the table at the same time as our pies but they were swiftly whipped away by a waiter who I assume was the head of our section who snapped at the very friendly waiter who had brought over our food that those greens were not for us. While we ate our pies I watched the greens being carried on a tray around the room by the snappy head of section. I think he did about three laps before he realised they were indeed meant for us.

The pie was a bit of a disappointment. I liked how rich and creamy it was but half of the potatoes were just slightly underdone. Though they were not rock hard it was just not pleasant. The low chairs proved quite of a problem at this point as the pie was served in a high pie dish so our elbows ended up around our ears as we tried to tackle the pastry with our knives and forks.

The dessert list wasn’t that inspiring. I went for Blackberry and Banana Eton Mess because I love banana. It tasted exactly how you would imagine it to. Mark had a Chocolate Fondant which was surprisingly good following the two courses of disappointment. Hot and chocolatey with a very runny centre indeed. Meanwhile I watched a brother and sister look at their bill and gawp at each other, horrified by the price I believe, while Mummy sat looking full and content.

We finished off with some tea and some petit fours which were alright, nothing spesh. Mark paid the bill and we left, taking a Savoy Grill card with us on the way because it looked really cool. We also had a nice time using the toilets and peering through the windows of an overpriced chocolate concession shop. No, it wasn’t the greatest of meals, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t have a nice time. The Savoy Grill was refurbished with the intention of looking like it originally had I believe, and eating there felt like how it might have been about 50 years ago. I enjoyed this feeling of being stuck in the past and I thought I might bring my mother here in the future because I think she would find it charming and faintly humorous. Though the food was disappointing there is something about the place that makes me want to make a repeat visit. I think it has something to do with that lunch trolley and the lobster bisque I happened to notice on the a la carte menu… Mark, take note.


Savoy Grill
Strand City of London
Greater London WC2R 0EU