The wines, though, are the talking point. With a curated selection of old and new-world wines on offer, the wine-list stands out for its unexpected variety – the Amancaya, Cabernet Sav and Malbec slipped down a little too easily.
Designed for people to kickback after work, The Back Room is the new drinking den for city workers. But, the real reason to go to The Back Room, is to enjoy a hearty meal in the separate but connected main restaurant, Kitty Hawk, downstairs.
After a tipple or two, trot downstairs, where a vast open-plan restaurant awaits. With a sea of tables, Kitty Hawk lacks the intimacy of the bar upstairs. Besuited men, deep in conversation, populate the dining room every which way you turn. Lights are dimmed, the ceiling low and the walls garnished with racks and racks of red and white wine. It feels a little like a warehouse rather than a plush, rather expensive restaurant. But, here, it's all about the wine and the food rather than the ambiance.
To start, be sure to order the Brigham scallops, with celeriac, samphire and crispy chicken skin. The eclectic palette of flavours, brought together in one dish, leaves you feelingly pleasantly satisfied. The Burrata with fennel and citrus segments comes highly recommended, as does the Beef carpaccio, pickled walnut salsa and smoked bone marrow.
While the starters are delicate and quite inventive, the mains are rather more basic, hovering towards the comfort-food rather than the fine-dining end of the spectrum. Hearty plates of roasted chicken, grilled sticky pork belly and haddock pie with prawns, mussels and broccoli are the type of dishes on offer. The beef burger was a touch underwhelming given the £15 price tag, although the accompanying bacon jam was delectable. The fish and chips, on the other hand, did not disappoint.
To our surprise, there was nothing of particular note on the desert menu. But if you are still hungry the Crème Brûlée is a good option – we advise two spoons though, as it's big enough for two.
We ended the evening, on the recommendation of the waitress, with a barrel age Negroni. Normally an aperitif, we discovered that it's also a delicious nightcap. Served in a heavy, clear-cut tumbler, the bracingly bitter, herbaceously complex yet still refreshing melange of flavours was the perfect way to finish the meal.
We must say that neither The Back Room nor Kitty Hawk are destination restaurants, but if you are in need of a little relief from the wealth of uninspiring chain restaurants in the City, these two come highly recommended.
|What||The Back Room &The Kitty Hawk Review,|
|Where||The Kitty Hawk Back Room, 1,13,14 South Place, London , EC2M 7EB | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Liverpool Street (underground)|
15 Nov 17 – 15 Nov 18, 7:30 AM – 11:00 PM
|Website||Please click here for more information|