MISSION NAME: #steaksecret
MISSION IN-BRIEF: A new and authentic American dining experience from JW Steakhouse
SUPPORTING DATA: A unique passcode to discover the #steaksecret is required before the mission can begin
Intelligence reports indicate that a secret mission, for those who choose to accept it, is set to launch in the heart of London’s affluent Mayfair at JW Steakhouse, one of the leading American steakhouses located in Park Lane’s iconic Grosvenor House, a JW Marriott Hotel.
If the rumour is true, the restaurant will be introducing an exclusive and intimate dining experience titled #steaksecret which will take place in the Private Dining Room, away from prying eyes of local civilians. The mission includes tracking down JW Steakhouse’s Head Chef, Julian Ward who has created a characteristically American, mouth-watering set menu. Julian holds the key to unveiling the #steaksecret.
and so my mission began...
I was invited to take a plus one to try out a new dining experience 'Steak Secret'.
We were given a location and time to meet, handed 'Agent' letters and instructed 'not to open until we were in the car'... all a little intriguing if not slightly scary. My mission (as a blogger) was to tweet, instagram and post as much as possible throughout my impending 'experience' - easy enough however as the night unfolded I found it hard not to dive straight in before taking pics.
We entered a disused entrance in what looked like a Mayfair type building and were welcomed by Raoul de Souza, whom handed us some delicious cocktails. One beetroot and another one which was sweet (slightly overwhelmed as to exactly what was going on I didn't note the exact ingredients, but I can tell you one thing...they went down very well!) these were accompanied by marrow popcorn - a bit of a taste experience!
Through a large, very busy and very organised kitchen and into...JW Steakhouse - a place that has been on my go to list for a long old time! We were ushered into an intimate private dining room for 8 guests surrounded by pictures of 'the greats', George Clooney in my case and told to have a look around...
|Picture courtesy of JW|
Naturally I dived into the wine cellar. It was pretty impressive... this is just a small part of one wall...
Once seated we were able to check out the feast we were about to start. Seven courses made from a selection of their best sellers and best cuts of meat - sounds rubbish doesn't it? ;)
White wine was served and Parker house rolls were introduced to the table by the head chef Julian Ward. These were fluffy rolls of warm rosemary salted bread. Cooked in the staub pan and brought straight out to us. I really liked the idea of the tear and share bread done on a smaller scale for an intimate dinner. The bread was delicious, served with Mr D's pet hate (cold butter). If it wasn't for the feast that was ahead I would have eaten it all in one go... but I abstained as much as I could.
Our first course came swiftly in the form of a pumpkin tart with jerky. Pumpkin tart is something I have always wondered about and never seen it on a menu... It was sweet and also sharp from the fruit on top had a really gooey center... those fans of GBBO will be pleased to hear there was no soggy bottom on this tart! The beef jerky was absolutely divine I would pay good money to have bags of this stuff!
Onto course two: Trio of JW classics. Marland style lump crab cakes, Oyster Rockefeller and steak tartar.
Oyster Rockefeller was another new one for me. The creamed spinach was lovely however I was lost on the deep fried oyster. I adore oysters but couldn't really taste them here, however I do like the idea of them with this trio as it does look rather fab...
My absolute favourite of the starters was the tartar with a soft quail's egg. Incredibly smooth, melt in the mouth meat, perfectly seasoned and placed on thin melba toast. I would happily go back for this alone.
A JW classic and one which the restaurant continuously sell over and over. Juicy crab cake served with a great punchy old bay tartar - delicious.
We were then given a meat master class and talked through the different cuts. The far one being held up by Julian is their signature cut the 'Tomahawk'. A tender steak which they keep on the bone for effect. This one is just over 1.1kg which is by no means their smallest...
We were talke through the three wines which will accompany our meat:
|A pinot noir to go with the Wagayu|
|A Zinfandel to go with the Tomahawk|
|A cabernet Sauvignon to go with the short rib|
Then the main arrived. Three pieces of some of their most prime cuts of meat... Wagayu, Tomahawk and short rib.
The wagayu was topped with Lump crab, asparagus and bearnaise sauce. By far my favourite of the three. The steak was perfect and so tender my knife cut through like butter. The sauce on top was delicious with the crab which is something I would never have imagined to go so well together.
The tomahawk, served med-rare, was my 3rd favourite of the three but by no means was it bad in anyway, purely because the other two were just so good and brought a little extra something exciting and delicious to my taste buds.
The short rib was braised for 12hrs, served with some onion shavings and it literally fell away from my fork. It was incredibly tender, sticky and sweet.
Our sides came in every form imaginable...
creamed spinach and onion rings...
Hand cut triple cooked chips...
And the mother of all sides... lobster Mac 'n cheese which The London Foodie and I both thought was out of this world...
Tummies full to bursting we had next Bourbon Ice which was a welcoming and refreshing adult 'slush puppy'...
And then a fantastic dessert of 3 types of doughnuts. Each with peanut butter, key lime and bourbon butter fillings served with a dreamy vanilla milkshake... The bourbon filling was delicious as was the key lime pie... CK and I both stopped at that as we were by now almost popping!!
Sadly, having an allergy to caffeine I couldn't try the final part of the meal which was a Kentucky Coffee. It smelt and apparently tasted like 'Chistmas' which I thought was a rather lovely description...
Julian came and spoke to us towards the end of the meal whereby we got on the subject of US foods and Whoppie pie - something I had never eaten. He kindly brought out some for us to try... A bit like enormous Oreo's, and nothing of what I was expecting they had an incredibly squidgy center and a very chocolaty outer.
If any of you fancy a dining experience like no other, have a foodie other half or are simply meat lovers then this is for you. It's £75pp excluding service charge and booze and this I feel is spot on the money.
Should you wish to book go to this link: #steaksecret and enter in the unique code: Oklahoma405
Should you be accepted onto the mission I can assure you, you will have a fantastic evening ahead.