A busy Saturday night in the West End. Rain imminent. You’ve just left a comedy show at the Soho theatre. There’s a lot of choice. As the Minister of Food & Drink, I am lucky enough to have staff who go off hunting for somewhere to eat whilst I am enjoying my comedic entertainment.
That was the case tonight, Chris & Caroline were on the hunt whilst we were all enjoying ourselves with Rob Newman. Their research led them to Muriel’s Kitchen, in the famous Old Compton Street. This is part of a small chain of three restaurants, in Richmond, South Kensington and here in Soho.
On a busy Saturday night, they were just waiting for a party of 6 to turn up, to fill up some of their large tables, and we sailed past several couples who were waiting for a table 🙂
An unexpected bonus to start – a bottle of St Peters Dark G-Free. A very interesting dark and gluten free ale, and certainly a surprise to find it in Central London. They have several St Peters bottles on the menu, but not much else of interest when it comes to beer.
However, there is a powerful sting in the tail. This retails at £2.50 a bottle. This almost certainly means that they buy it for less than this, because trade establishments generally don’t pay retail prices. We all understand that restaurants put a mark up on alcohol to help cover their costs. But to charge £7 for it is utterly criminal. I’m no restaurant trade expert, but that just seems way too high. This meant that everyone stuck to one drink, since to have more would be just to waste money.
Mrs MOFAD had a Wyld Wood cider. This had problems of its own. It was not chilled, and was only offered with ice. This is not how we drink cider in this country. It should be chilled, and never served with ice, unlike some of the weird coloured stuff that is seen in pubs nowadays.
So, on to the food. As you’ve probably already worked out, Mrs MOFAD loves curry. So Mrs MOFAD had curry, a chicken and peach curry to be precise. This was a gently spiced dish, with nice rice, poppadoms, mango chutney and cucumber raita. Although there was a lack of plate action, and too much plant pot action.
I too was suffering from lack of plate anxiety. Pulled pork sliders (mini burger buns filled with pulled pork) with chips and slaw. Chips in a flower pot. As I’ve noted several times before, this makes it hard to apply salt and vinegar, and in this case, the delicious Tiptree BBQ sauce that was on offer (I love the stuff).
It was very tasty (a touch on the small side for the portion) but good value for money (unlike the beer). Service was quick and efficient, and with a smile. But without a plate.
If you’re looking for somewhere to eat in Soho, this is not a bad option. Just don’t get too much of a taste for the beer!