Steak clubs in London and affordable steak is all the rage at the moment. Hawksmoor set the trend of steak club, particularly in London. That is, the trend of a high end steak club where hipsters hang out. A posh locale, stylish clientèle and members edge. Just last week I had lunch at Flat Iron restaurant in Beak Street. Less of the members model but oh the urgency was there.
On Monday night I visited a restaurant in Covent Garden bordering Strand that is about to launch its own Monday £10 steak night entitled “Monday Night Steak Out”.
Bedford & Strand is nondescript from the outside. When I checked out the address I couldn’t fathom where it could possibly be and I know Bedford Street very well with its looming TGI Friday restaurant and Fitness First branch, I couldn’t picture a restaurant. Ah, well I found it on Monday. A simple opening with a sign that looked like it had been there for years and years and years (in a good way). Reminiscent of so many basement wine bars such as Champagne Charlies and Gordon’s Wine Bar. I was surprised to discover that this bar/restaurant had only actually been open for eight years!
I dined with a lovely small intimate group and as we acquainted ourselves with each other, our wine arrived. Red naturally. This was one of the wine options that will be on offer at the £10 steak night and I was overly impressed. It was a deep, rich and sweet wine from the south of France but the flavour was not overpowering and it was very smooth to drink.
We had bread, balsamic vinegar in olive oil, olives and pickles to whet our appetite but only for a short time. Both were whisked away as early as they came and the real reason we were here shone through.
Bring out the meat.
The cuts were explained to us and the part of the cow they derived from.
The Bavette steak was good and cooked perfectly rare, but the flat iron was definitely my favourite as it was less chewy, more flavoursome and lean. With the steak diners are offered a choice of either Café de Paris sauce (Butter, Curry Powder, Shallots, Mustard, Garlic and Lea & Perrins) or Peppercorn sauce, as well as four types of mustard supplied. Sides are priced at just £3.50 each and very generous portions. Creamed Spinach was a delight to see as an accompaniment – quite an unusual side for a standard one and a lot of effort put in. Chantenay Carrots, Garden salad. Yes please.
For a Monday it was pretty busy which makes me wonder why the emphasis on a steak night event. I know it’s not to drive in footfall as that is certainly not needed.
Unfortunately I could not stop for dessert but I heard whispers of creme brûlée and treacle sponge being bandied about.
The cheese board menu looked extremely inviting and I pondered comté for a hot minute before remembering my 9am interview the next morning (I was the interviewer) so I made my violin excuses and headed towards Charing Cross station.
I love the fact that Bedford & Strand restaurant is less than a five minute walk from my office in St Martin’s Lane. I know that I’ll be back. For their steak nights after a hard day at work and to try the steak tartare I spotted on the menu…
Love FoodieClaire xBedford & Strand 1A Bedford St, London, WC2E 9HH 020 7836 3033 www.bedford-strand.com