Eat Here: Hawksmoor, Air StreetBy Gemma Perlin
Steak. It’s visceral, hearty and well a good one makes me a bit emotional. To those who aren’t steak fanatics, Hawksmoor are the Rolls Royce of the steak world. But seafood? They launched Air Street in a goal to offer both prime steak and deliciously fresh seafood. A compelling combination if ever we heard one.
Hawksmoor: The Vibe:
You enter through a discreet door just off Regent Street, climb a spiral staircase and enter the restaurant. The restaurant is imposing, with a practical marathon to reach your table. A literal cavern of boozy bankers, media folk and couples canoodling in booths. Ok, so you’re essentially in a very upmarket mass catering canteen, yet there is a feeling of intimacy created by the incredible service and the sexy lighting. It actually has that busy bubbling atmosphere organically that so many restaurants attempt to mimic with music.
Hawksmoor: The Food:
We opted for elberry cove mussels with bay and chilli, and roasted scallops with white port and garlic. The mussels were garlicky, rich and lemony. The scallops served in scallop shells were almost as big as the restaurant and were succulent pillowy delights.
For mains, it had to be steak. The decision over which steak to have is not one taken lightly. I can aliken it to a decision over a mortgage. Not joking, the waiters take it equally seriously. What steak you like is truly a highly personal decision and it is all about getting the ratio of tender and flavour right for yourself. I prioritise tender so always opt for the filet, medium rare. My steak pal went for sirloin. Both were meaty, melt in your mouth feasts served on simple white plates.
Order the bone marrow gravy. Lots of it and don’t dwell on the fact it’s called marrow. It’s mouth smacking delicious and will make you reject any offer of Bisto in the future. Don’t forget to get greedy on the sides, we loved the creamed spinach, triple cooked fries and asparagus. For pud, keep it simple and go for the salted caramel rolos, childhood scrumminess bundled into a dessert.
Hawksmoor: The Verdict:
One of the things I love about steak is that it’s magnificient but unpretentious. This is exactly why Hawksmoor is so successful. They are serious about what they are doing, but they don’t let this quest for the best overpower the dining experience.