Last week I was asked to review US-Style Barbecoa, a restaurant co-owned by Jamie Oliver and American chef Adam Perry Lang. I was looking forward to this one for days after having drooled over the menu a good few times. It read like a carnivore's dream come true.
The restaurant is located in New Change, a shopping centre with a good choice of dining options as well.
I loved the place the minute I walked in. I was guided to our table, past the central kitchen where big chunks of meat were being prepared on the grill. It looked promising.
The restaurant itself looked very stylish. There was lots of wood paneling, ceiling to floor windows flooded the restaurant with natural light and the view from our table couldn't be nicer; we had front row seats to St Paul's Cathedral.
With yellow leather banquettes rather than proper chairs, it was slightly reminiscent of an American diner.
We kicked off with £5 happy hour drinks from the cocktail menu and two starters. We devoured the Devil's cornbread which was a polenta topped with lots of gooey cheese, spring onions, chorizo and chili peppers.We also tried the short rib croquettes, which were resting on blobs of spicy kimchi mayo.
My friend and I both chose the rump steak served on mushed, charred aubergines for our mains and added a portion of sweet potatoes and a side of creamy spinach.
The meat was grilled to perfection and I loved the aubergines, which reminded me a bit of Lebanese moutabal. If anything, there was too much food and I need to take a bit of a break before continuing with dessert.
Even though we were allocated a dining session for two hours, we were not turfed out when our time was up. Pretty rare in London these days. Although the reason for that could of course be the fact that I was there to review the place. Nonetheless, we had a fantastic evening with great food and super friendly service.