Review of 'The Savoy Grill'

One of those restaurants in London that I have always wanted to visit the Savoy Grill was refurbished a few years ago as part of the refurbishment of the Savoy hotel.

Having never visited the hotel before (but the theatre many times) we started our evening with a trip to the American Bar where we were shown to a table in the rather crowded and noisy but comfortable interior with photographs of famous people everywhere. The drinks menu shown to us had no drinks below £8 but we managed with a glass of house wine (for my partner) and a fruit cocktail drink for myself (quite nice) - Coming to more than £20! Luckily the blow of the bill was mitigated by the “complementary” olives (green stuffed with anchovies - so I avoided though my better half suggested they were not THAT fishy - and black) and mixed roasted nuts (very nice and the attentive staff brought us a second generous helping when she saw we had emptied the initial bowl). Ok, it was expensive but it has a bit of a buzz and the staff are definitely on the ball.

Taking our drinks we walked down the stairs back to the lobby of the hotel (having paid in the bar - evidently they can't transfer the bill to the hotel, but hey-ho) to turn right into the restaurant. The restaurant is actually quite small and quite pleasant if not terribly impressive - dark colours throughout and quite dramatic crystal chandeliers.

Normally we would not simply visit a restaurant like this “out of the blue” which is true in this case. We had a special deal with “Time Out” to discount the pre-theatre menu offered by the restaurant - normally 3 courses for £26 (though we paid less and also got a free bellini). As we had our drinks from the bar our bellini were delayed but when they arrived my wife (as I do not drink) found them very strong and quite strongly flavoured with grapefruit (which she does not really enjoy) served in tall, slender, elegant glasses.

For our starters, I had the beef tongue salad which was quite tasty and pretty - served with delicate tiny green salad leaves, radish slices, and a semi-sweat vinaigrette. My wife had the pea and broadbean soup with cheese beignets which was lovely and light - the beignets were tasty and did not get soggy. For our mains I had a light beef pastry with creamy mash served with broccoli greens poured over with a tasty gravy. The pie was quite nice and surprisingly sweet. My partner had a pollock with a parsley/pesto crust served with lemon butter cream sauce, rocket and jersey royal potatoes which was quite nice if not terribly astounding in flavour. On the side we had the spinach (£4) and new potatoes (£3.95) which were very well prepared and added a bit more depth to the meal. Our final course I had the “marinated mango and passion fruit salad with yogurt and lemon sorbet” which was wonderfully tangy but not acidic in any way and had a delightful sauce. Delicious. My partner had the “lemon and rosemary crème brûlée with raspberry sorbet” - She loved the sorbet on top but found the crème very mild and tasteless and the crunchy “browned” sugar topping almost burned (I tasted it and found it fine but it was quite strong a flavour that overwhelmed any flavour in the crème).

The service throughout our meal was very good and quite friendly often making jokes with us - They made us feel very welcome. Getting the bill at the end took quite a few minutes to try to get anyone's attention despite many staff throughout the restaurant which might be a bit of a problem if we were going to a show…

A pleasant if not outstanding evening. Perhaps it might have been different if we were on the full menu which looked interesting with the obvious aged-beef (etc). Quite good service and relaxing environment. Not bad…just not amazing as we had expected.

Rating: “It is OK but I have some issues”

Review Date: 2013-06-08

Cuisine: American/British

Address: Savoy Hotel Strand LONDON WC2R 0EU

Public Transport: TUBE Covent Garden

Location: London (England) - Covent Garden



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