When we rocked up at Grill on the Market, I'll confess, we were a smidge late. Ok, we were about 20 minutes late and in that time our table had been given away and we waited around an hour for another to emerge. The front of house lady gave us short shrift for being late, despite a load of apologies, (us, not her) and I rather felt we got off on the wrong foot.
Still it did give us an hour to enjoy some rather delicious Chapel Down sparkling wine, which we bought to drown our sorrows at having missed our table by minutes, and soak up the atmosphere.
Smithfield is where the financial district and the media community merge it would seem, judging by the patrons in that night. Suits and Converse everywhere. The music was a good mix of piano jazz and soul and it got us in the mood to eat heaps of food and slouch down in the big booths at the back of the restaurant.
Our lovely waitress made up for the attitude of the front of house and offered us up all kinds of menu options and taste combinations and ideas of what went well with what. We picked our way through specials and main menu items.
She was insightful about the menu and could recommend particular dishes from the specials, which I presume meant that chef has the serving team taste the dishes in order to recommend them on to patrons. This was proved as I asked her about a couple of dishes I was interested in.
Grill on the Market is all about steak and seafood and has a hint of cool, New York Americana about the menu rather than all-out hot dog Americana.
Fajitas, burgers, steak and lobster are the mainstays on the menu with the emphasis on ‘posh’ versions and prime cuts of meat. Chateaubriand, Wagyu and yellow fin tuna loin and grilled lobster are among the wide choices.
There’s a varied wine list at Grill on the Market, divided up by taste rather than region so it’s easy to choose something different from the palate you are used to without needing too much preamble.
Prices for starters are around £6, the majority of mains are around £17 and deserts, which include Red Velvet Cake, are at around £6.
Written by Lorna Strickland-Cook