In Review: Gridiron

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Kitchen view of Gridiron

The basics:

19 Old Park Ln, Mayfair, London W1K 1LB

020 7447 1080

A snapshot:

Gridiron brings a contemporary, pared-back version of Mayfair sophistication to Old Park Lane, with no white table cloths in sight. This is the place for your principal to wine and dine clients, with high quality food and drinks from some of London’s biggest players.

A bit of background:

Situated in the Como Metropolitan Hotel on Old Park Lane, Gridiron is the brainchild of Mr Meatopia Richard H. Turner, and opened at the end of 2018. With Turner on executive chef duties, it’s clear that the open fire and charcoal pit are his influence.

Paired with an exciting cocktail selection by the Venning brothers (responsible for Dalston’s understated Three Sheets bar and several other equally cool spots around London), and acclaimed wine list from wine expert Fiona Beckett, there remains little doubt that guests are in for a treat from both the kitchen and the bar.

Lobster angel hair pasta, shellfish sauce side

The food:

As you’d expect from a modern live-fire grill, the menu has a great selection of meat and seafood, including different steaks, cuts and types of fish. The great thing about Gridiron, however, is that the menu offers a few fantastic vegetarian options as well, so both carnivores and veggies will be satisfied. This is in part due to Turner’s interest in how different food reacts to the open flame, from the Lake District’s famous Herdwick lamb to delicate locally-sourced vegetables.

When we visited, we ordered a variety of dishes including a great tomato salad with produce from the Isle of Wight. These came out as an explosion of colour on the plate, with a variety of sizes paired with basil and delicious sourdough. We were also recommended the Cornish lobster and angel hair pasta, which would have been a perfect option for a decadent, light starter.

We opted to try the burger with Ogleshield cheese and were surprised when the waiter didn’t ask how we wanted the meat. It turns out there’s good reason for this – it was cooked to a perfect medium-rare as the patty contains bone marrow, and needs to be at a specific temperature so it melts, leaving behind a delicious, juicy burger.

We also sampled the grilled summer polenta – a crispy, hearty vegetarian option plated with sweet caramelised onion and sundried tomato.

On the cocktail menu at Gridiron, it’s not unexpected to find unconventional ingredients like miso, pickled onion and clear milk. This can mean that there’s an element of trust required when ordering, but Max and Noel Venning definitely know what they’re doing. We were treated to a lemon, truffle, caviar and vermouth masterpiece; it was so well-balanced and refreshing it was hard to stop at one!

For dessert, we chose the mille-feuille and a pavlova. The mille-feuille was a perfect stack of light flaky pastry and cream, complimented with acidity from red berries and cherry sorbet. The pavlova arrived with theatrical mastery as we discovered pockets of peach and lime flavours hidden beneath meringue shards. If we could have our time again, we would’ve definitely taken up the suggested wine pairings, which included a 20-year-old Tawny port.

It’s clear that through their expertise, the names behind the menu at Gridiron have confidence in what they’re offering up, and this comes across throughout the dining experience.

When booking a table, look out for guest chef takeovers of the restaurant which will offer unique and exclusive menus. Tom Brown of Cornerstone and Selin Kiazim of Oklava and Kyseri, have both had a turn in the kitchen here.

Mille Feuille with red fruits, cherry sorbet

The venue:

With booths lining the dimly-lit dining room, there’s space for diners to relax and enjoy a long lunch or dinner. The ambiance is sophisticated and charming enough to impress an important client, but would equally provide a fantastic venue for a date night. The charcoal fire pit is a striking thing to walk past while being seated, a visual cue of what to expect on the menu.

On our visit, the wait staff were extremely attentive, open and knowledgeable about what made the offering special. We visited at lunch time, when only a few other tables were occupied which made for a enjoyable, intimate setting. Book your principal and their guest in for a dinner slot if they want for a livelier atmosphere.

In summary:

Gridiron fits right in to its Mayfair location, offering a great spot for your principal to wine and dine visitors.

Tiger regularly reviews restaurants around London to bring you the best venue for your next lunch meeting or client dinner. If you’re a PA, EA or a lifestyle manager, you may also be interested in our PA Collective®, with its list of directory partners, events and a forum where you can share tips and tricks with your fellow PAs. Click here to find out how to apply.

Author Larissa Shearman Tiger Recruitment Team

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