And so it was on our third attempt we succeeded in gaining entry to the place everyone wants to go! We had tried to eat here a couple of times before on Friday evening’s where the waiting time ranged from two and half hours at 7:30 to an hour and a half at 6! I like places that don’t allow you to book, it’s the great attraction of the impromptu evening out. Being parents now where every minute is planned around Baby G the odd lunch out is about as spontaneous as life gets. We had enjoyed a particularly nice morning with him around Holland Park but needed to drop him at his grandma so we could go shopping for his birthday present. I had formulated a plan to try and secure the elusive table but didn’t mention to my lovely wife as she had been annoyed at missing out the last two times. So on the bus up to the West End I suggested we go via Shepherds Market for a wander. As it was midday I suggested we grab an early lunch before all the shopping and give “Burger & Lobster” one last try. We pitched up at 12:30 and it was already full, however we were given the option of waiting an hour or eating at the bar. We rapidly agreed to the bar seats.
It actually worked quite well as the bar is shaped rather than straight so I we were partly sat facing each other which gave us a bit more of an intimate experience to our informal lunch at the bar. I was heady with the success of getting into this legendary Shangri-La that I ordered us a bottle of bubbles whilst we took in the atmosphere. I remember this site was once a dowdy Mayfair boozer and though you can tell it’s origins they have done a nice job tarting it up. The panelling gives it a clubby feel but it is far from stuffy. There was a nice buzzy atmosphere all through our time there. It reminded us of a trip to the “Spotted Pig” in New York. Well the menu doesn’t take much explanation, burger, lobster or lobster roll. We both went for the grilled lobster though my lovely wife was erring to the lobster roll. However when the lobster came out she wasn’t disappointed. A beautifully grilled lobster, a tin of fries, a side salad and a big saucer of garlic butter sauce. It tasted really very nice, though if I’m honest some bits were better cooked than others, the claw meat better than the main carcass. However this might be down to the grilling, I may try steamed next time. But all in all very nice dish especially once you dipped the lobster into the sauce. Some attention deserves to go to the side salad which was really very good and a nice counterbalance to the sweet lobster meat. We both thought that with such a limited menu it needs to be spot on and really this was. A lovely messy tasty lunch.
Lobsters seen off we still had a fair bit of champagne to finish so we were offered dessert. Just the two choices, we shared a deconstructed cheese cake which was cheese cake mix with the biscuit base added in. Served simply in a tub. Very nice, nice and light after our lobster and sharing a tub like this made us feel at home. Service was very friendly, the Goodman group always employ nice friendly staff and the guys behind the bar were very engaging. They made us feel special despite dining at the bar. They had a serious set up of booze going on so I’d be keen to try their cocktail list on my next visit. If I did have a criticism it would be that though this place is popular it really very small. The bar is not really big enough to have people eating and people waiting in it. A couple of times the bar got swamped and we felt a bit jostled. Most of the time it was fine though. Maybe they should only have waiting/casual drinking at one part of the bar. Overall though a very positive experience, top quality food at very competitive prices. The atmosphere was great in there, it felt new and exciting. It needs a bit of planning to actually get in but well worth a visit.
Monday, April 16, 2012
Food 8 | Service 9 | Atmosphere 10 | Value for money 9