41 Beak Street
London, W1F 9SB
020 7734 4479
Only working a block away, I had high hopes from the moment this place opened its doors. We strolled in yesterday at about 1pm without a reservation and were offered a seat at the bar.
The menu was appetising, and we ordered quickly as we didn’t have long. Our drinks arrived straight away and our first order (Polenta topped with Salt Cod) came within 5 minutes. The creamed cod was really tasty but unfortunately the Polenta really let the side down being cold, damp and sweet. I suspect it would have been lovely had the polenta been crispy and hot. Also it was only one rather small piece.
Our Tapenade & Tomato Pizette arrived another 5 minutes later, hot crispy and tasty. It was nice but nothing to scream about.
We were already halfway through our beers at this point when the food simply stopped coming. We’d probably had 50g of food each and both looked around confused and food kept arriving but nowhere nearby enough to eat.
30+ minutes later we had chased and cajoled and though the staff seemed to be looking into it and promising us of food shortly to arrive nothing did. They were all very sweet and obliging but this didn’t seem to help expedite our food.
So after almost an hour we’d had a beer each and 75g of food and we cancelled our order to go to the sandwich bar next door. They initially intended to charge for our two tiny pieces of food and beers, though whilst we were in the midst of paying, the manager came over and apologised for the wait and said there would be no need to pay. This was definitely a saving grace on their part, had they not said that the tone of this review would have been much harsher and I would have definitely not returned.
All this said; the sweet staff, tasty food (what we received), & nice ambience will make me go back again. I’d really like to experience what all those food reviewers loved so much; surely Giles Coren can’t be wrong…