Sunday, 30 November 2008

Sophie's Steakhouse & Bar

Came tonight for dinner, as it was the last night of the soft opening at Sophie’s. This respectable SW10 stalwart surprised me by not expanding their operation earlier. Then all of the sudden with immense aplomb they took over the huge premises vacated by the utterly appalling and certainly not missed Papageno Restaurant; basically a tourist trap offering faux Italian cuisine.

Like the original outfit at Fulham Road, Sophie’s operates a non booking policy, thankfully this flagship place is huge so you shouldn’t have to wait till eternity for a table. From my observations, I hazard on at least 100 covers on the dining floor alone. The ambience is buzzy, youngish, abundance of loudish music and although I’m no fan of under lit rooms; I did however appreciate the clever eclectic mix of modern lighting utilised. The service at our table, surprise surprise, was handled astutely by a well-heeled English girl and in turn she and her colleagues were supervised by a couple of ‘hands-on’ blokes, Brits no less!

Sophie's trademark gratis salami- ironically the highlight of the meal.

As mentioned earlier, soft opening night and 50% off the food bill!

Common sense or rather the gluttonous side of me decided to plump for the dearest, biggest and most audacious piece of cow offered on the menu; the 27oz Porterhouse.

My dining companion (DC), bless his little cotton socks, went for the 8oz Fillet.

I ordered my steak medium rare and DC wanted his medium well; hoot to the highest promised land, the kitchen confused the order! My medium well Porterhouse was indeed very large (loads of greyish hue when cut) and DC’s medium rare fillet looked promising (but bloody when cut). Unfortunately we both concurred that both our steaks tasted lacklustre and found the claim on the menu that their meat has been dry aged for 28 days incredulous. In addition these steaks despite their burned "lines" also lacked the charbroiled taste. The not so crispy chips with skin on were generous but average tasting.

DC’s Lemon Meringue Pie was similar or tad inferior to what he experienced at boarding school.

My Sticky Toffee Pudding was a barely passable grade C.

I could have sworn these puddings are not entirely made on the premises but brought in en masse from some other place, if that’s not the case, they certainly tasted that they were.

Just as well for the 50% offer, otherwise the average meal will amount to nothing but poor value. This place will succeed for two reasons alone-
They’re open till 3 AM therefore good for the weekend drinkers, and what with the weak pound I’m also sure that they’ll attract our theatre going friends from across the pond who will appreciate Sophie’s Porterhouse more than I did.

29-31 Wellington St
London WC2E 7DB

No comments: