The Steak Restaurant – Hatch End, London
The Steak Restaurant stands somewhat apart from the others situated on the busy stretch of Hatch End’s Uxbridge Road, west London, thanks to its dark, wooden exterior. Granted it might look slightly dated to some, with its large and distinct signage, but it certainly catches the eye.
Moreover, The Steak Restaurant also has a newer sister site in Ealing called Steaks on the Green; except that recently, the original owner sold the former to two long-standing employees, both Muslims, one of whom was the head chef who continues in this capacity.
Immediately following the changing of hands, the co-owners put into place significant changes on improving the entire setup, which included the original Halal menu.
While The Steak Restaurant is, of course, all about the steaks, which have “been aged on the bone for at least 28 days”, there’s actually far more to the menu than that.
There wasn’t much in it between the Mojito and the Pina Colada. While they weren’t the best we’ve ever had, they were absolutely superb in their own respect.
The former was expertly balanced, with the mint refreshingly good; and though it initially appeared to be a touch on the sweet side, such doubts were swiftly allayed via a good stir.
The latter only confirmed that the mixologist possessed a deft touch in being able to balance between two contrasting ingredients, for the ratio of coconut to pineapple was perfectly judged in this creamy concoction.
The assortment of berries that made up the Berry Crush certainly came through, albeit gently. But, the combination of crushed ice and a thin straw meant incessant blockages.
Following a complimentary of breads, which include butter and olive bread, along with a seasoned bowl of warm edamame, it was on to the starters.
With the cheese beautifully soft and gooey on the inside, they were covered in a light and golden breadcrumb batter.
More impressively, these were entirely inhouse made, and really enjoyable with the accompanying sweet chilli sauce.
A mixed leave salad, drizzled with a light dressing, completed the dish.
What a pleasurable bowl of Zucchini Soup this was, and a large one at that. Firstly, for those not in the know, Zucchini is courgettes in Italian.
And this creamy, flavourous soup, with a touch of pepper to it, would be perfect in the upcoming winter days.
A Seafood Chowder indeed, with the smell of the sea captured right there in that bowl. Thick, creamy and luscious, when you have the assortment of seafod this well cooked, you know you’re halfway there. Incredibly satisfying!
What defined these Pacific Shrimp Tempura was their uber-light and -airy batter. And with shrimp so plump and juicy, dipping these into that accompanying watery vinegar sauce not just added a zingy note of sorts, but also completed the dish. Superb!
When you have such a lovely, fleshy, creamy Cornish Crab so full of flavour and presented on a bed of buttery avocado segments and cucumbers, which give the dish that sweet undertone, how can you not be left impressed?
While we don’t know why it was difficult peeling off the ultra-thin strips of Beef Carpaccio, what we do know was that it wasn’t worth the effort.
This was easily the weakest of the starters had, with the beef lacking any real taste. As a result, the side shows of parmesan (Halal, of course!) and rocket were quickly forgotten.
Nonetheless, we did find that had it not been for the extensive charring providing that smoky taste, this would have required some more seasoning to bring out that deep rich flavour we’re all familiar with when it comes to Rib Eye.
As for the peppercorn sauce it came with, then it certainly helped in making this a more enjoyable eat.
We did find, however, that this apparent shortcoming was easily rectified through two avenues: 1) simple seasoning on our part, which, to be honest, shouldn’t really be left to us; 2) a good application of the accompanying garlic butter spread, which was outstandingly good and helped to impart an extra level of richness to a meat which was, by nature, firmer in texture.
The above image pretty much explains why we opted for this Chateaubriand to be our review’s Feature Image, with its glistening pink medium rare interior and its dark and beautifully charred exterior.
Nevertheless, as attractive as this tenderloin fillet looked, it did split the crowd somewhat. Although we all agreed on it being tender and juicy, despite one Lion enjoying its chewy softness and its mild umami taste, the other two weren’t as impressed, with one remarking: “Pretty darn disappointed. Very underwhelming. A waste of quality meat due to it not being seasoned. The centre was watery with a faint taste of meat.”
In the end, the enjoyment of this meat will, of course, be dependent on one’s taste in its cooking.
Having been cooked bang on medium, the charring again turned out to be a substitute to a piece of beef whose quality would have really come through had it been properly seasoned.
A simply-made plate with half a charred tomato to enjoy what was otherwise a decent fillet.
These inhouse sauces weren’t just top notch, but managed to allay our collective concerns over the issue of seasoning.
If we had to choose one, it would probably be, with its heady earthiness, the Bernaise Truffle, followed by the deep-flavoured Mushroom.
The prawns being suspended above a plate of rice and salad may appear a little dated, but there was no questioning the cooking and taste of the Tiger Prawns, which turned out deliciously plump and moist, with just the right level of chewiness.
What we did question, however, was the overall dish, with large-grained rice, which wasn’t that tasty if we’re being honest, and some salad. Honestly; they could do so much more with said prawns.
A dish as simple as this falls or stands on the precise cooking of its constituent elements. We’re happy to say, that the Fillet of Seabass was beautifully judged, coming out with a crispy skin, and drizzled with a classic lemon-infused butter and caper sauce. Paired with broccoli, this was extremely satisfying.
A word on this House Burger’s brioche bun too, which was soft and airy, and lightly toasted to a finish.
With pickle, red onion, a thick slice of tomato and lettuce, the patty, which was covered in a good amount of gooey cheese, wasn’t as flavoured as we’d have preferred.
As such, it’s a decent burger, but nothing we’d go out of our way for.
These pair of Grilled Tomato and Mushroom Skewers may not sound like much, but believe you us, they were one of the dishes of this review, and vital in having alongside any of the aforementioned steaks.
The inhouse barbecue sauce was rich and smoky, with a sweet edge to it, and really brought alive the cherry tomatos and spongy mushrooms.
Now this was a Mac and Cheese! A small dish, but one which, with its cheesy top, was topped with fried truffle shavings that cleverly provided some subtle seasoning.
Thin Pommes Frites that were relatively crispy and quite addictive.
These weren’t seasoned, but instead swiftly boiled before being tossed in finely chopped shallots and some chilli flakes, with the garlic barely discernible.
The Tomato & Onion Salad was what it was – nothing more, nothing less.
Here’s an indication of dedication and passion: all the desserts available at The Steak Restaurant are inhouse!
This really was a fabulous Crème Brûlée, with that thin and crunchy sugar top breaking apart at the merest tap.
Beneath was a silky smooth custard that was superbly set and whose sweetness was just how we like it – mellow without being overly so.
This was further evidenced by the fact that it was gooey on the inside, but only just.
Taste-wise, however, it was indulgently chocolatey, with the vanilla ice cream again pairing well.
And so given its taste, we only went away wondering: if only it had been executed better.
Although slightly caught around the edges, this was far lighter in texture than it might betray, surprising us with its rich, sweet and sticky apple filling, with the smooth scoop of vanilla ice cream bringing that hot and cold contrast.
But again we couldn’t help but wonder: how darn good this would have been with a really well made custard?
In any case, The Steak Restaurant offers a selection of hot drinks too; so be sure not to try these homemade desserts without a cuppa.
- YES/ NO
FSA HYGIENE RATING
- CHILD SEATING
- DISABLED FACILITIES
While there’s no doubt that the steaks are of good quality and well executed, they were, by and large, relatively underseasoned, though nothing that can’t immediately be remedied.
Additionally, the menu, where possible, is made inhouse, with an impressive dessert menu which, given the trio we tried, was extremely good.
If you’re in Harrow’s Hatch End, then The Steak Restaurant should certainly be your first point of contact.
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