The Guinea Grill revisited - a steak haven in Mayfair
It's been three years since Oisin Rogers, with previous successes from The Ship and The Canonbury Tavern under his belt, took over at The Guinea Grill (we first visited soon after).
The Youngs pub had, for some time, a quiet reputation as a great steak restaurant and a fine pub in Mayfair - the past three years have seen that reputation cemented and so much more. It has now become one of the top steak restaurants in town and one of the best pubs in the area. The week we write this, it's about to get a bit of a refurb and will come out shiny and new. And we are also hearing rumours that breakfast might be in the offing soon (for the first time ever).
You can read our original full Test Drive here - and below you can see our updated visit. Put simply, the historic pub and restaurant is still serving up some of the best steaks in town.
Ideally, you'll be welcomed into the restaurant by this chap, Dominic Rowntree (aka blogger Samphire and Salsify). Want to find out how he got on with his career change into The Guinea? Check out his diary here.
Start your dinner here with a pint in the pub (their Guinness is particularly good).
If you're not having a Guinness - then consider one of their barrel-aged negronis. And even if you're just popping in for a drink, they have a great bar snacks menu too. As you can just about see in this pic, that menu is handily printed on the beer mats (the first time we've seen this, but it's a GREAT idea). Pies, lamb chops and steak are all available on this menu, as well as mash.
Oisin Rogers, the man in charge at the Guinea Grill is also one of the people responsible for the yearly Scotch Egg Challenge - and this year's winner, the pork and offal laab egg by the Smoking Goat's Ali Borer is available in the bar here in limited quantities. A must if it's on - and if not, the Guinea's own scotch egg is also excellent.
Because sometimes oysters are the only way to kick off a big steak dinner (£22 for half a dozen natives).
Our starter of pig cheek and bacon terrine with pickled caramelised baby onions, tumeric pickled cauliflower and white wine pickled cucumber in a sauce of mustard, crème fraiche and turmeric vinegar (£11)
Not sure which steak to order? You'll pass by this fridge on the way into the restaurant and can always pop back and choose the right one for you.
The main event (part 1) - this is the rib steak on the bone (16 oz for £39). And with an added lamb cutlet on the side (£7) just because. As you'd expect, the steak is cooked exactly to order and (at the time of writing) it's the best time to order some of the wonderfully sweet spring lamb.
More steak! The main event part 2 - this was the sirloin (12 oz for £36). You couldn't ask for a juicier, more delicious steak. The greens are mainly for show.
Obviously, there are sides aplenty - but this one particularly caught our eye - the bacon dumplings (7.50) on a bed of bacon jam. Laying on the carbs a bit, of course, but worth it.
Onto desserts. If all that steak has left you needing a nice lie-down, then going with something lighter is the way to go - with this pitch-perfect creme brulee (£8).
But, if you've got room for something a tiny bit more substantial, then we'd definitely recommend the clootie dumplings with whisky custard. They're essentially mini Christmas puddings, available all year round (and also easy to share). That whisky custard is also a great match for the rich puddings.
Hot Dinners ate as guests of The Guinea Grill.
More about The Guinea Grill
Where is it? 30 Bruton Pl, Mayfair, London W1J 6NL
When will it re-open? It'll be open after the refurb on 29 April 2019