J Sheekey Atlantic Bar

Restaurants, British Covent Garden
Recommended
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 out of 5 stars
(4user reviews)
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J Sheekey Atlantic Bar

Like Paris’s Le Grand Colbert or Café Florian in Venice, J Sheekey is in danger of becoming an institution whose uniquely local appeal stretches far beyond London. The addition of this two-unit oyster bar creates an imposing procession of branded red canopies along St Martin’s Court. What could appeal more to tourists than the chance to knock back a couple of native oysters amid the nation’s finest stars of stage and screen? Vanessa Redgrave, Michael Gambon, that bloke from ‘Rebus’… if they’re not sitting close by they are at least hanging on the walls; regulars will recognise many of the photographs from the main restaurant. The menu is not substantially different from the restaurant either, save an extended choice of oysters and a tempting seasonal dish or two such as ceps on toast with garlic butter. Its appeal lies largely in the opportunity to eat well, simply and conveniently at such a grandly proportioned and convivial bar – at least twice the size of Sheekey’s old bar (which it looks just like) and that at rival Bentley’s. Five types of oyster are currently offered (West Mersea pearls and natives, fines de claires, Strangford Lough rocks and Helford Creek natives) as well as a mixed plate with spicy boar sausage. But if you’re not rushing off to the theatre, opt for the platter of fruits de mer, a necessarily leisurely trawl through primarily British waters that takes in the oysters as well as other marine goodies including cockles, winkles, crab, mussels, langoustine and exquisitely nutty tasting palourdes clams. Wines to accompany start at £18 a bottle – not a bargain but not prohibitively pricey, either. It was quiet and staff were extremely relaxed on our visit – but like Alec Guinness on the London stage, that’s something we can’t expect to see again.

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J Sheekey Atlantic Bar says
Sister to the legendary J Sheekey next door, J Sheekey Atlantic Bar is a more informal proposition, serving seasonal sharing plates of fish and shellfish, with the choice of eating around the horseshoe-shaped bar, on tables that oversee the open kitchen or those situated on the terrace.
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Posted:

Venue name: J Sheekey Atlantic Bar
Contact:
Address: 33-35 St Martin's Court
London
WC2N 4AL
Opening hours: Monday to Saturday 12noon-12 midnight Sunday 12noon-10.30pm
Transport: Tube: Leicester Square tube
Price: Meal for two with wine and service: around £100.
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Average User Rating

5 / 5

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LiveReviews|4
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Vera S
tastemaker

Once in a blue moon you may allow yourself to be tempted to dine with the stars - or so they say. I just had to see what the fuss was about after reading Lena Dunham's 'Not that kind of girl', so we booked for lunch at the bar.


It is a fabulous experience, dining at J Sheekey. You feel special just sitting at the beautiful, marble topping and munching on some delicious, soft Italian sourdough while you wait for your fresh oysters to arrive. Seafood is 10/10 here, obviously. Beautifully presented and luxuriously silky, the oysters lead the show - but a mixed seafood platter comes really quite close. Everything is cut to precision and tastes as if it had been freshly caught.


I don't even recommend moving onto other dishes: I ordered a pistou soup, which was nice but nothing special. 


Prepare to spend some dollars here. But you probably already knew that. White-glove service, excellent wine and seafood are worth splashing out on. You know the feeling.

L-J
tastemaker

Post Theatre perfection, we popped in following a show at the Noel Coward opposite, we were greeted by a charming hostess who sat us up at the old bar for a drink, whilst a space became available in the new larger Atlantic bar, I drank a beautiful Aperol Spritz severed in a crystal glass. A few moments later we were moved, instantaneously transporting us to the feel of a Grand French Art Deco Brasserie, I quaffed down a glass of Gyejacquot champers and Six plump fresh West Mersee oysters, while the gentleman enjoyed a crab burger with fries and several Peroni. An unoffensive £67 pounds later, a lovely spot for a post theatre nibble and tipple, fantastic ambiance and a great experience. 

Ros A
Tastemaker

J Sheekey is my go-to "smart restaurant." It has never disappointed me or others that I've taken there. The food is fabulous (largely seafood) and the service is always superb. The location is super central, just a stone's throw from Leicester Square but it's slightly off the beaten track so doesn't get huge crowds. You'll always need to book in advance and it's especially busy pre and post theatre - so try for a table around 8.30pm/9pm if you're having difficulty. I adore this place and always call it out as a hidden gem. 

Joss B
Tastemaker

What can one say other than this is great place for seafood. The bar has, in the last few years doubled in size but kept the charm of the red leather seating and art deco features with the black an white photos of famous actors that have been on stage at the near by theaters. 

Food wise you wont be disappointed, just make sure you go with a few others so you can all share different things from the menu - the food is small sharing portions. There are many things that never leave the menu, such as the superb shrimp and scallop burger, but there are always new things such as KFC - Korean Fried Cauliflower - which is just brilliant. The oysters, fresh Atlantic prawns and the ceviche are all worth having too. Avoid the lobster as it is tiny for what you pay, and the fish pie is nothing special. Make sure you ask what specials are on that day as they are usually worth trying. And when it comes to dessert ask for the frozen berries with hot white chocolate sauce even if its not on the menu.