Gillray's Steakhouse & Bar

County Hall, Westminster Bridge Road, South Bank, London

Gillray's Steakhouse & Bar
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9/10 from 1 user review

Very satisfying food, but high prices

Gillray\'s Steakhouse & Bar picture

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Address: Westminster Bridge Road
South Bank
Map:Map & nearby
Region:South Bank
Nearest Station:Waterloo
Opening Hours:

Monday - Friday: 06:30 – 22:30
Saturday & Sunday: 07:00 - 22.30
Nb: The Bar is open until midnight daily
Facilities & Info:
  • Smoking area
  • Party bookings accepted
  • Private hire available
  • Booking advisable
  • Disabled access/facilities
  • Children welcome
  • Credit cards accepted
  • Background music
About: Gillray's Steakhouse & Bar with fantastic views across the Thames of Big Ben, The Houses of Parliament and the London Eye, is the latest entrant to the contest to create "London's Best Steakhouse." Intrinsic to the high quality of every Gillray's steak are Hereford cattle sourced from the Duke of Devonshire's Bolton Abbey estate in Yorkshire. "Most American steak is corn-fed," says Executive Chef Gareth Bowen. "We believe that the true flavour of beef is found in England due to the culmination of amazing husbandry, lush grass (from all that rain!) and skilled butchers. As with everything the devil is in the detail which is why the flavour and texture of grass fed English beef is without doubt the best in the world."

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Gillray's Steakhouse & Bar features and articles

Gillray's Steakhouse & Bar Introduces NEW Breakfast Menu
Start your day right with a 5* Breakfast overlooking the Thames
Added on November 26, 2012

"Very satisfying food, but high prices"

Review Rating: 7 / 10
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Reviewed by

Much before the Aquarium and the Zen China Restaurant took up residence, County Hall was the home of the Greater London Council (and the London County Council before that). From 1981-86 Ken Livingstone was its leader, as well as a constant pain in the backside for Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. Eventually, tired of Red Ken’s power and lefty policies, Thatcher decided to get rid, and after abolishing the GLC, County Hall was sold to a Japanese media company.

A swish, five star Marriott Hotel is in the building now, and Gillray’s is its new restaurant. Named after caricaturist James Gillray, who loved poking fun at politicians, monarchs and the elite, Gillray’s presents itself as a British take on the American steakhouse.

Despite the location and large windows there is a slim view of the river, and the dining room has a whiff of conference hall about it, with high ceilings, sensible wood panelling and leather banquettes.

The cocktail list, complete with illustrations by Gillray, harks back to other eras, with a bias towards gin. Though very curious about the GLC, which is spiced up with ginger to represent the battles between Livingstone and la Thatcher, I choose the Voluptuary Collins, a refreshing, Victorian concoction of lemon juice, soda water, jasmine cordial and Tanqueray Rangpur, the brand’s new lime-flavoured product.

The menu is split into steaks and “the others”, which include lamb rump, veal cutlet and lemon sole. Steaks are available on or off the bone, from the behemothic Bull’s Head - that’s 1 kg of meat - to the fillet; there is a “ladies cut” fillet too, which is a slim-line 150g. Beef comes from grass-fed cattle reared on a regal-sounding estate in Hereford (the Duke of Devonshire’s Bolton Abbey Estate in fact. I read it on the menu).

In place of bread we are brought two very crisp Yorkshire puddings stuffed with melted Montgomery Cheddar, with horseradish on the side. We like very much.

King scallops with bacon crisps are good, with a mild pea puree and watercress leaves adding earthy dashes. The chicken liver parfait is a bit too runny for the crisp-like sourdough toast but has a good, strong flavour.

The fillet (the regular 200g naturally, 50g less is hardly going to turn us into Giselle) is a velvety hunk of beef that’s a pleasure to sink teeth into, as is the prime rib on the bone with carpetbag oysters, with juicy marbled meat stuffed with the large fleshy molluscs.

Chips fried in truffle oil and sprinkled with grated Parmesan and black pepper are delicious, but even better is the Witchill and Apple Wood Bake, with layers of sliced potato smothered in hot smoky cheese.

Desserts are very British; there’s sticky toffee pudding and apple crumble, but we try the sherry trifle, which comes in a jar with a screw-on lid and with a separate glass of sherry, ready to be poured. Layered sponge and cubes of jelly enveloped in custard and cream, soaked in warm booze is a rather indulgent choice after chomping on steak, and for £9.50 it’s a good job it’s served in such a way you can take the leftovers home.

The food is well executed and gratifying, but there is a downside - Gillray’s is expensive. Starters cost around a tenner and sides are extra; factor in the price of a steak, which averages around £30 plus wines starting from £28 and you can imagine this being a meal certain MPs wouldn’t have hesitated to add to their expense claims.

Leila reviewed Gillray's Steakhouse & Bar on Mon 28 May 2012

The Latest User Reviews of Gillray's Steakhouse & Bar

User Rating: 9 / 10
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Member since: Aug 2012
Posts: 0
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All In London User Recommended Business
I visited here for a meal with my wife after a friend recommended that we should visit as we both love steak.

The decor was very comfortable and the staff were attentive and helpful.
The steaks were cooked to perfection and tasted delicious, and easily some of the best anywhere.

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