I have never seen a lift lined with a printed fake giraffe skin before, but it’s a definite way of making sure that your clientele are aware that your restaurant has an African heritage. The Meat Company, a restaurant at the southern end of Westfield shopping centre in Shepherds’ Bush, is the UK outlet of a South African company that’s also expanded into the Middle East.
With a name like that, it’s hardly surprising that the focus is on meat, and steak in particular. The high point of the menu are the four super aged steak cuts (fillet, rib-eye, New Yorker, rump) from Britain, and three (New-Yorker, Rib Eye, and fillet) from grain fed North American Black Angus in a choice of sizes. But before we got to the steak, we started with some chocolate and beetroot bread, and a sharing platter of starters including bruschetta, salt and pepper calamari, chicken wings, and braised meat cigars – slow cooked beef rib taken off the bone and wrapped in filo pastry.
We thought that the evening was off to a great start with the bread; although it sounds a little off the wall, the combination worked well, marrying the sweetness of the beetroot with the bitterness of very dark chocolate. I’m going to have to have a go at a version of this myself. Of our starting platter, the filo pastry cigars (£9.75) were particularly memorable; rich and unctuous, as were the chicken wings cooked in a dark and sumptuous barbecue sauce.
From there, I moved on to a 400g rib-eye , while H went for the wagyu cut of the day. There are a number of possible accompaniments to boost the luxury factor: lobster, foie gras, prawns, scallops, mushrooms or, my choice of roasted bone marrow with bordelaise sauce, while H maxed out with ½ a lobster. We did think that the glaze wasn’t necessary, given the quality of the meat, but we hadn’t focussed enough on the menu to see that it was the default treatment; another time, we would have asked for it to be omitted. Just our preference, though; we both thought that the steaks were excellent, although undeniably expensive at £54 and £67 including the accompaniments.
If we’re going to have a blow-out dinner, we might as well do it properly so we followed up with puddings: an excellent clementine creme caramel and a sticky toffee pudding-eque malva pudding – apparently it was Nelson Mandela’s favourite, and each order includes a donation to his charity. Both we very wicked, entirely un-needed but very good. To accompany pudding, we enjoyed a glass of Canadian ice wine from the excellent and comprehensive New World focussed wine list – highly recommended.
Service was good and we were well looked after, although the staff knew we were reviewing. We chatted to the manager who had been with the company for 8 years, starting as a runner and had worked his way up, all credit to a business who invests in their staff and rewards hard work and dedication.
We enjoyed our visit to The Meat Co, finding the steaks excellent and some real gems in the menu. It has to be said that eating as we did is not an economical evening our bill would have come to £250, but, there are some less expensive items to be found with ribs, skewers and burgers in the £12 to £25 region. Obviously you would not want to go here if you were vegetarian, but there were 4 dishes to choose from, as well as an extensive full Halal menu. We were surrounded by shoppers treating themselves after touring Westfield, and can see that as a way of topping off a spot of retail therapy, there’s much going for it.
Fuss Free Flavours was the guest of The Meat Co, all opinions our own.
The Meat Co
Westfield London Shopping Centre
020 8749 5914