Drink & Dine

Beak St Cheap Eats – Grillshack


Grillshack is an interesting concept – a standard grill joint with a bit of technology integrated into the order process. The restaurant is all bare woods, open kitchen, and music that sounds like it’s bartender’s iPhone on shuffle. No problem, there are thousands like that around the US. But when it comes to ordering, you can opt to use the iPad at the front, use the app on your smartphone, or be old fashioned with ordering at the till.

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The app is the best part and lets you select what food you want and even provides pictures to help with your decision. It’s also useful to help price your meal before you order, but at the surprisingly low prices (particularly for Soho), you probably won’t be too worried. There will be a take-out option via the app shortly from what I hear which should be pretty interesting.

Meeting friends?

Given that it’s Soho, you’ve got plenty of options but my personal picks would be Graphic on Golden Squrae for some great gin and cocktails or Bob Bob Ricard for a bit of a posher feel to help you spend some of the money you’ll save on food later

What to eat?

The menu is simple with just a few basic options. You get burgers, rump steak and fries, half a grilled chicken, or a halloumi salad for the veggie option. Sides include shoestring fries, regular chips, grilled corn, and Old Bay popcorn.

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The burger is nothing special, but for a fiver you can’t really complain. Sure it’s a tad on the small side and could use a thicker patty, but the taste is good and it works great as a bite before a night out. The chicken is tender and well roasted and is enough for either a hungry person or two people to share with sides. It’s a bit tough to tell if it’s better value than Nando’s though for £8.

The halloumi salad is a pile of greens with some grilled strips of halloumi. I love halloumi but it feels a bit scattered to be considered a main on its own account.

Sides-wise, the shoestring fries are crispy but utterly tasteless –get the regular chips which are crunchy and fluffy and pretty much all you could ask for in a potato.  The grilled corn is similarly epic and worth a punt on any day. Sadly, the Old Bay popcorn lacked any decent sense of seasoning – strange for something that is just popcorn and seasoning.

For desserts, you get a choice of carrot and walnut cake or a triple chocolate ice cream sandwich. Get the ice cream sandwich – it’s incredible. In fact, if all you get is the ice cream sandwich, it’s a trip well spent.

Drinks?

Keeping with the theme, you have a few beers on offer as well as wine by the glass or carafe. The wine is very drinkable and while it’s not going to wow any budding sommeliers, it pairs well with the food.

Worth the dosh?

Without a doubt. Yes, you can pay a few more quid and get a better burger at Honest Burger, but for the same price you get a burger, chips, and a beer at Grill Shack. It’s not going to be the site of a BurgerQuest in the near  future or beat out Flat Iron for the cheap steak title, but it’s a great place to hang out and catch up with friends.

Find Grillshack here

61-63 Beak Street

London W1F 9SL

http://www.grillshack.com

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