Jackson & Rye


A faithful homage to upscale American brasseries, with diner-style breakfasts, a lively bar and a spot-on atmosphere at night.

Few London dining rooms succeed in recreating the sleek design and smooth operation of the best US restaurants. Sitting in Jackson & Rye, though, I’m transported across the Atlantic, to the East Coast. The Martin Brudnizki Design Studio interior looks just right – a miniature ‘Nighthawks’ by Edward Hopper, only much more convivial with its well-placed central bar in an L-shaped room, flatteringly low lighting, the burble of lively conversation, the clink of glasses. The service is attentive and engaging, without being too ‘Have- A-Nice-Day’. Even the menu is a pretty good translation of the metropolitan East Coast dining scene.

The kitchen kicks off the day with a diner-style breakfast menu that includes creamed grits (a maize porridge originally from the Southern states) topped with flaked almonds, berries and maple syrup, and enough brunch-style egg dishes to keep a Boston cabbie’s blood pressure up; my baked eggs with ham and spinach were slightly overcooked, a common problem when using a cast-iron cocotte dish.

At 11.30am on weekdays the breakfast menu segues into the lunch and dinner menu (a separate brunch menu is served at weekends until 4.30pm). A Reuben sandwich was faithful to the original versions, the caraway-studded rye bread perfectly grilled, the swiss cheese melting over the hot salt beef and sauerkraut. An open sandwich of Southern-style buttermilk-fried chicken was properly tangy, the batter impregnated with hot spices, chipotle mayo and avocado completing the topping on a toasted brioche bun.

Not all dishes are so faithful to their roots. True chowder is a modestly priced bowl of soup, in one of three main styles (Manhattan, New England and Rhode Island), but our ‘chowder’ here had been deconstructed – a fillet of cod on a base of leeks, smoked bacon and clams; perhaps too liberal an interpretation. A dish improved by crossing the pond was peanut butter cookies, turned into mid-Atlantic jammie dodgers by the addition of blobs of raspberry jam in the centre, further remade into a restaurant dessert by the addition of plain ice-cream and a tiny jug of hot chocolate sauce on the side.

In one week I visited for breakfast, lunch and dinner – and evening was the best time to drop in, when the low lighting and lively bar scene is at its most atmospheric, and the best waiting staff were pressed into service (service in the daylight hours was hit-or-miss). We raised our glasses to this homage to the upscale American brasserie, here in the heart of London’s Soho.


Venue name: Jackson & Rye
Address: 56 Wardour Street
Opening hours: Meals served 8am-11.30pm Mon-Fri; 9am-11.30pm Sat; 10am-11pm Sun.
Transport: Tube: Leicester Square or Piccadilly Circus
Price: Dinner for two with drinks and service: around £70.

Average User Rating

2.7 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:1
  • 4 star:3
  • 3 star:2
  • 2 star:3
  • 1 star:3
2 people listening
Guy P

After dinner, try the Redemption Rye. It's a very nice whisky.


I found Jackson and Rye whilst wondering through Soho with a friend and we have both been regular visitors since.

The décor beautiful, with a classic southern US charm. Its a great place for breakfast/brunch- I love the buttermilk pancakes served with maple syrup and banana cream!

The staff are also fantastic, they are both extremely attentive and professional- we were even given a complementary bottle of fizz on a recent birthday visit! 


I've visited for both dinner and brunch.  Loved the steak & eggs for dinner; cocktails are good too.  The Reuben sandwich for brunch is a winner - plus we drank so many Breakfast Sours and Bloody Marys - highly recommend.  The interior is beautiful too (though the service is often poor).  More details and photos on my blog here: http://hyhoi.com/2014/03/jackson-rye-soho/

- Nina

Have You Heard Of It? London bar & restaurant blogger | HYHOI.com

Lucia Elizabeth


Loved it! Great menu for brunch. Amazing scones! Honestly, go. You will not be disappointed. Also our server Rolph was superb!


Meh. I was left hugely underwhelmed. Sure, the decor is nice, but only if you haven't been to places in the US that do that kind of thing much better. The food was distinctly average (especially for the cost), and arrived barely warm. You could get the same stuff at better quality and for less money in other pretty close by. The drinks list was good, especially the lovely unfiltered beer (although three of the glass mugs we had ours in had leaks or semi-lethal chips in). Plus, as the place is so big, is there really any need to cram so many tables into the front parlour bit so no one can move.


My girlfriends and I went for dinner and drinks on a Thursday night. We were unable to get a table booking but were able to walk in and get one straight away. Our waitress was very attentive and was quick to get repeat drinks. We just ordered mains, one of us had the sea bass which she said was fantastic. A few of us had the lemon and rosemary chicken which was a good sized portion and tasty. I'd have to agree with other reviewers that the shoestring fries were disappointing though, a bit overcooked and not very warm. I think it's a nice bar and I'd definitely go for drinks again, not sure I'd rush back for dinner though.


Our service was good (apart from the two hour wait for a table), but I really have to agree with the other reviews below. A very disappointing meal.


I ate at Jackson & Rye tonight and was incredibly dissatisfied with the food, especially after such a glowing review. I ordered the Reuben and was surprised and disappointed with the sandwich I received. First, the salt beef only covered about two thirds of the bread, leaving a good portion of the sandwich completely without meat. Second, the salt beef was so thinly cut that, where there was meat on the sandwich, it was overwhelmed by the cheese so entirely that I can't even comment on the quality or taste of the meat itself. If this were a ham and cheese sandwich I would merely be annoyed, but this was supposed to be a Reuben. If you have ever eaten a proper Reuben, or even seen a photo of one, you can understand my disappointment with the meagre portion of meat in this particular version. The bread was tasty and nicely toasted, and the sauerkraut pleasant, but these did not make up for the fact that this was not a Reuben at all, but a fairly expensive toasted cheese sandwich masquerading as one. It's not as if I have nothing to compare it to - I have eaten better (and cheaper) Reubens in America, in Canada - even in an Australian airport, not a location known for either food quality or value. There are also better Reubens to be had in London. I also tried the shoe string and regular fries, both of which were very average, and after that was not interested in testing the dessert menu. I can't speak for other dishes on the menu, but if you go and order the Reuben, don't make the mistake of expecting anything but a pale, insufficient imitation of the real thing.


Had dinner at Jackson & Rye last night and was really disappointed. The Garden Salad and Shrimp & Grits starters were nice enough, but the mains we had were downright bad. Steak was tough, shoestring fries were hard and stone cold, and the cheeseburger was really bland. The desserts looked quite nice, but by that point we were so unimpressed we got the bill and left. Agree with the reviewer below about the decor… and Satsuma too!


Had a quick pre-theatre dinner here last night. The decor is a little try-hard and felt a bit like a Disneyland theme venue. The service is poor and staff seemingly very inexperienced. The food was mediocre at best. Very disappointing overall - bring back Satsuma please!


We had a lovely LONG lunch there on the 16th. Service was brill and everyone very friendly. Espresso was cold but upon saying this they whizzed them away and took it off the bill (plus we got some hot ones). Loved the interior. Perfect for a girly slow afternoon to escape the crowds.