July 2018: it's been reported that Neil Rankin is planning to tweak the Indian-style cuisine at his City temper, to become more like the original temper's Mexican-based cuisine. Slow lunchtime trade has contributed to the shift.
Neil Rankin is to open a second Temper, just months after opening in Soho: he has taken the last slot in Bank's Angel court devlopement. This sibling will be just as meat-focussed as its West End brother, but with Indian/curry influences (rather than Mexican ones, as in Soho). Watch this space for opening dates and details.
Harden's survey result
“Huge cuts of carefully sourced meat, such as great Barnsley chops, are expertly cooked over wood” at Neil Rankin’s “loud and atmospheric” Soho basement with a 6-metre fire pit, which nowadays also has two similar satellites in Covent Garden and near Bank: the set-up – “an open kitchen”, “with all the meat on display” creates “some real theatre and buzz”. And in WC2, the venue’s wood-fired oven is also pressed into service to deliver some “incredible deep-dish pizza”. There remain one or two reporters who consider the experience “totally overhyped”, but the general impression is of “a time to remember” and with “a surprisingly reasonable bill for such big hunks of meat”.
“The theatre of the fire pits” (“grab a table at the counter to see your food cooking, and to strike up a conversation with the chefs”) helps inspire fans of the “extraordinary culinary style” of Neil Rankin’s “loud”, “subterranean temple to everything carnivorous” in Soho, which has a spin-off in the City (“in a quiet alley by Bank”) and now also in Covent Garden (where most of the cooking is in a wood-fired oven, and where they also do pizza). The verdict on the food, however, is becoming increasingly mixed – to fans the smoked BBQ fare is “brilliant and creative”, featuring “dishes unlike anywhere else”, but the proportion of sceptics who find the food “bland”, or “over-salted” or “very over-hyped” is growing.
“A place of worship for all carnivores!” – Neil Rankin’s “underground BBQ and fire pit yearling” in Soho “is like a descent into Dante’s dark and confusing world full of smoke” and “if you can sit at the bar, clustered around the firepit, you get the full-on smoke experience” – “a theatrical and fascinating evening leaving you with an understanding of the hard work that goes into flawless carnivorous cooking” (although “you may be smelling it in your clothes for days”). Most of the many reports say that “if you like flesh, it’s a must” – “simply cooked smoked meats; beef, lamb, goat served on a perfectly puffed flatbread or tacos, with a range of exceptional tapas and sides, delivering a truly multi-sensory event, with beautifully complimentary flavours”. Ratings are undercut however, by a disgruntled minority who just don’t ‘get it’: “for me, it just didn’t live up to the hype and the bill really stung!”. In July 2017, branch two opened in the City, in Bank’s Angel Court development, with more Indian/curry influences (rather than Mexican ones, as in Soho).
temper City Restaurant Diner Reviews
"I've only eaten at lunchtimes, so I don't know if there is a livelier evening ambience. But the food is very good, with the pork carnitas bordering on addictive. Now my go to meat place in the City."
"very high quality meat"
"Fire driven, with emphasis on carnivores. Simple, tasty, banging. Some of the best tacos in the capital. "
12pm - 3.30pm, Sat 4pm
Last orders: 11pm, Sat 10pm