I went to Redhook on Friday evening with my partner and my parents. My first impressions were positive as the decor was superb and there was nice, lively atmosphere; without it being too loud. My first impressions were going to be challenged througout the course of the evening. We had two waiters on the evening, I can't recall their names so will refer to them as Chalk and Cheese for the duration of this review. Chalk was a most friendly, helpful chap from Leeds, Cheese was an aloof, bordering on arrogant, unhelpful chap with a questionable goatee. From where Cheese hails I have no idea, as any attempt at small talk during ordering and later complaining was met with short shrift. The food was a mixed bag, for starters I had the Soft Shell Crab Tempura, the Tempura was thicker than I have come to expect. The Crab once I got to it was fresh with the right texture, but lacked seasoning. My partner went for the Crab Linguine, it was superb, rich, garlicky with a nice amount of crab, parsley and chill. Both my parents went for the Oysters, Dad, raw with a Red Wine Vinegar and Shallot dressing and Mum, grilled with Parmesan and black pepper. Dads Oysters had that milky look and were as big as Clams (some of the smallest I have ever seen), my Dad, not one to mince words stated they were the first Oysters he had ever tasted that didn't taste of the sea. The grilled Oysters were said to be' pretty uninspiring'. When the waiter (Cheese) asked how the starters were I mentioned the above, he stated he was sorry and then just carried on being aloof. Being a typically English complainer (rubbish) I left it at that. The mains were on the whole a triumph. my partner went for the Scallops with Chorizo, My Mum the Sea Bass, both were cooked to perfection and both of them waxed lyrical about their choices. Dad and I ordered the British Surf & Turf, which consisted of Sirloin Steak and two Langoustines. The steak was superb, seasoned to perfection with a wonderful texture. The Langoustines were overcooked, although strangely enough to varying degress, my first one was just overcooked the second one was like floury mush. My Dad's were by all acounts the same. For sides we had Goose fat Chips and the Spring greens, both were very well cooked and a joy to eat. We also ordered the Lentils & Pancetta, which they forgot to bring. When the bill arrived (£310 for four, with two bottles of the cheaper wine), the waiter asked how we enjoyed it, when I started to try and explain that on the whole the mains were great, BUT the Langoustines were like mush and he forgot to bring the Lentils, he again apologised quite tersly and proceeded to carry on along his way. Like I said earlier I'm crap at complaining, but when paying these relatively high prices I tend hope I don't have a need to. What they do well, they do very well, but there are a few things they need to work on which will stop me becoming a regular visitor here.
Time Out rating:
Time Out says
Posted: Thu Jul 29 2010
A few weeks ago we reviewed Giant Robot, a revamp of the Match EC1 site that created a bar-restaurant akin to an Italian-American New York venue. Just around the corner, the group behind it (which also owns Milk & Honey, among others) has deepened its love affair with all things US and opened Redhook, a lunch-to-dinner joint named after a district in Brooklyn. Being in Farringdon, there’s a bar too, and the whole place has that ‘ex-industrial’ feel, with bare brick, high ceilings and big windows which, fortunately, also have a ‘New York’ feel.
Its sell of ‘seafood and steaks’ is pretty accurate – you won’t find much else on the menu save a couple of pasta dishes. There’s market fish, large fruits de mer platters, lobster and prawns. Oysters (French rocks only) are served either Rockefeller or with a fruit-based sauce enlivened with Tabasco – a couple of the half-dozen bivalves we got had shards of shell in them, though.
For mains, we went surf and turf, although on separate plates – seared scallops with chorizo, red pepper and parsley oil (£16 for five) and a Scottish ribeye (£22). As well as cuts from north of the border, Redhook cooks American steaks and even Australian wagyu. Importing expensive beef to Britain always seems a bit pointless to me, when tasty cows are something we do pretty well ourselves. But to do it this close to Smithfield meat market seems almost perverse.
The steak was good, however, cooked perfectly rare as requested, even though the Spanish Josper charcoal oven (worth £20,000, a waitress told us) wasn’t working yet – either too hot or too tepid. Either way, steaks were being chargrilled without it.
The price tag on the ribeye included an accompaniment of no more than a few watercress leaves, so sides are essential – ‘big chips’ were satisfyingly beefy and had clearly been cooked more than once for maximum crunchy-outside, soft-inside bite, but a ‘Redhook’ salad for £5 was a bit tight – amounting to no more than beans, peas and some ‘toasted’ slices of garlic.
The wine list is drawn from the Americas and Bordeaux, with a good few by the glass and carafe; meanwhile, the Milk & Honey influence is a guarantee of ambrosial cocktails. Some early reports (during the first weeks after opening) suggested the food needed a bit of work. After our visit, though, we’re pleased to say that things seem to be running a lot more smoothly. As they should at these prices.
Redhook 89 Turnmill Street
- Venue phone:
020 7065 6800
- Venue website:
- Opening hours:
Open noon-midnight Mon-Wed; noon-1am Thur, Fri; 6pm-1am Sat
Tube: Farringdon tube/rail
Meal for two with drinks and service: around £80
- 89 Turnmill Street
- 020 7065 6800
- 89 Turnmill Street
Average User Rating
3 / 5
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Stunning decor topped off by really good food. Tried the surf and turf - tasty and juicy, lots of flavour, warm prawns which were again good and a superb wine list with some of my favourite Delicato wines on there. Nowhere else round there does cool so effortlessly.