Pie and mash, Mobile Army Surgical Hospital (M*A*S*H*); the word mash brings many things to mind, none of which is a chain of Danish steakhouses. Yet this ‘Modern American Steak House’ has now taken up residence in the subterranean grand dining room of a former hotel; it’s the chain’s first venture outside Denmark.
After a multi-million pound renovation (it last opened as Titanic restaurant), the huge room has been restored to 1930s Art Deco with many of the original features still in place. Half-empty on a lunchtime visit, we couldn’t help imagining Jack Nicholson propping up the bar (as he does in ‘The Shining’).
Between said bar and the dining room, two glass meat lockers hung with ageing beef signal what this place is really about. The well-informed staff are happy to talk you through the characteristics of the Argentinian, Danish, Uruguayan and US steaks on offer here.
600g of dry-aged Danish long-bone ribeye came perfectly rare and caramelised on the outside with a moody, dark-pink middle and well-developed flavour. The seasoning was spot on.
The more delicate Australian wagyu, though tender and lightly marbled with fat, lacked the melt-in-the mouth buttery wow-factor you’d expect from a cow tended to in the Kobe way, especially when they are selling the meat at £50 per 200g – that’s a jaw-dropping £250 per kilo.
Despite the location close to Piccadilly Circus, the restaurant is clearly not aiming to compete for Angus Steak House’s customers – the starters include luxury-priced dishes such as foie gras terrine or grilled lobster.
Mash is definitely not for anyone on a tight budget. But for a special occasion, or a spot of client entertaining it’s a safe choice. Alternatively, just come for a cocktail and soak up the atmosphere. You might even spot Jack.