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Review

Giulia Verdinelli

Gridiron

££££
Steaks  in  Mayfair
Giulia Verdinelli

Let’s be honest, without Robin, Batman would be screwed. And without Watson, Sherlock would probably just be a guy in a deer hat mumbling that his coffee is responsible for the financial crisis. And Shrek, well, that guy would still be rolling around in his own filth if Donkey hadn’t forced him to leave the swamp behind. What we’re saying is, more often than not, heroes are nothing without their sidekicks. And nowhere is that more true than at Park Lane steak restaurant Gridiron.

This slick spot is part of Mayfair’s Como Metropolitan hotel, and the main act is the meat. Not just any meat, but the kind of great slabs of Angus T-bone and Barnsley hogget that you’ll recognise from cartoons as the type of thing you throw at wolves in order to escape them. And for the most part, the meat is good. At times, very good. But that’s not what you’re here for. Go ahead and order a near 40 quid Hereford rib-eye, but just know that the meat here is basically your gateway to get to the sides. Their rich, excellent sides.

Giulia Verdinelli

Day or night, with your parents or with your colleagues, at the marble counter or on the dark green leather banquette seating - it doesn’t matter, the beef dripping gallette potatoes are your ride or die here. They’re basically heavyweight bricks of carbohydrates and oil that make your common chip look like a runt who got lost on the way to the deep fat fryer. You want them, no, need them, on your table. But, then there’s also the Tunworth mashed potato with braised trotter and crackling - which sounds like Lord Bath’s shopping list but tastes how a scalp massage feels. Even the heritage carrots are done so well that you’ll be glad that whoever you’re with insisted ordering a vegetable was a good idea.

Gridiron is a restaurant that should be used to impress, and not just because of how dipping the grilled tenderstem broccoli in the bone marrow sauce will make you feel, but because of the space. There’s a lot of dark leather seating, moody lighting, butcher’s diagrams in gold frames, and suited servers who are more than willing to tell you the backstory of the very expensive steak knife you’re holding. It’s a sophisticated spot that’ll inevitably bear witness to plenty of people saying ‘dinner’s on me’ when the £300 bill arrives as a not-so-subtle nod that they’re super successful, thank you very much. So come here for a business dinner, come here on a grown-up date night, or, better yet, treat your sidekick to a £39 piece of meat, and double that in sides. Afterall, you’d be screwed without them.

Food Rundown

Crispy Scampi With Jalapeño Tartare

We like to picture this scampi sauntering up to scampi elsewhere and telling them to ‘do better’. We’re very into the texture and we’ll happily take a litre of the jalapeño sauce home with us, please and thank you.

Giulia Verdinelli
Lamb Belly Fritters With Mint Aioli

What you have here is a very decent lamb croquette situation. The mint aioli is a bit of a surprise. And much like surprises, you’ll either be very into it or respond to it with a single silent nod. We say, go for it.

Giulia Verdinelli
Barnsley Hogget

Sounds distinctly like the name of Frodo Baggins’ favourite cousin. Tastes great. Pour some of the brown butter and anchovy sauce over this baby and you’ve reached peak carnivore territory.

Hereford Rump

At 29 casual British pounds, this is the cheapest steak here, but it also happens to be one of the best. Get involved in the béarnaise sauce.

Giulia Verdinelli
Beef Dripping Gallette Potatoes

Your noble carbohydrate steed. Your knight in shining beef fat. Your steak’s best pal. A must order.

Giulia Verdinelli
Tunworth Mashed Potato, Braised Trotter, Crackling

Rich and creamy in a way that makes you feel just a tiny bit guilty for living life this well. Be warned, the crackling has the kind of crunch that ensures dentists never go out of business. Hands down, one of the best things here.

Glazed Heritage Carrots

These have the look of a vegetable that was chilling at the farm yesterday and somehow wound up on your plate today. They’re very good.

Grilled Tenderstem Broccoli

We love broccoli. This is some decent broccoli. If you want broccoli, order it. We’re going to stop saying broccoli now.

Giulia Verdinelli
Sticky Toffee Pudding Armagnac

This is the kind of dessert that makes you say ‘yes sir’ outloud. Why? Maybe it’s the rich toffee. Maybe it’s the sharp hit of booze. Maybe it’s just nice to taste something so sweet after mainlining that much meat. But this is a great way to finish off your meal.

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