Beard to Tail EC2
REVIEWS, May 13, 2013
Overall Value
out of 5
Beard to Tail, 77 Curtain Rd, London, EC2A 3BS

An unadorned Shoreditch purveyor of ‘meat & whiskey’ – it sounds a convivial sort of concept, but we found the reality rather up-and-down.

So we find ourselves in a chilly Shoreditch, in search of a quick Sunday night dinner. We see this likely-looking place – which bills itself as a Meat & Whiskey Bar & Restaurant – still advertising its Sunday roast. The very suggestion somehow connotes warmth and welcome, so in we go.

Deflation quickly sets in. The unadorned interior, with its curiously ‘flat’ lighting, turns out not to feel especially welcoming, and – straight away – we’re told the roast is ‘off’. Full marks for letting us know so quickly’ but a shame they’d left the board outside.

A burger seems a suitable alternative, so we configure our selection based around that. When we come to order, though, burgers are off too ‘ so, from an already-short menu that’s becoming very short indeed, we decide to skip our formerly intended starter, and go straight to the beef salad.

It’s about as dull as can be. Fridge-cold beef slices (bavette?) on enormous fridge-cold lettuce leaves. And the beef verges on inedible. Fortunately, saving us the embarrassment of pointing out that we couldn’t eat the main ingredient of our salad, we make use of the extensive cover the greenery provides to return much of the meat to the kitchen unnoticed.

It’s not all bad, though – the French fries (or, rather, chunky deep-fried wedges) are pretty good, and the sinful NY cheesecake and the espresso are really commendable.

Our small ‘sample’ meal having yielded impressions which could only be describe as ‘mixed’, we thought we’d better check what other reviewers have said – seems our up-and-down experience was, in fact, not entirely atypical. If you do hit unlucky, though, the list of bourbons, and related cocktails could be a source of much consolation.

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