I didn't even need to look up from my desk to see the sneers from my colleagues. 'You're going where'? 'Giraffe' I replied sheepishly. 'Soho' I quickly added with a hint of confidence. For the uninitiated, Giraffe is a 'family restaurant' which serves a rainbow of burgers, flatbreads, skewers and grilled meats to buggy wielding mothers and screaming children. Or so I thought.
|Upstairs (photo Mystery)|
Michelle @tweetygourmet had kindly organised for myself and Jeanne @cooksisterblog to visit Giraffe 'Bar and Grill' in Soho, opened earlier this year. We were greeted by a team of fresh faced, but clearly spooked staff. They had been forewarned of our arrival, either that or rocking up to lunch with a couple of lenses and a DSLR isn't as conspicuous as it used to be.
'Everything ok?' She asked nervously. 'Umm, yes. just a bit of overflow here'. I half considered sending it back. After glancing back at the 'Short and Serious' section of the cocktail list, I decided that there was indeed some cruel joke being played here, the list was indeed seriously short. I decided not to resurrect any more fruit and stuck with my lot.
The sides were excellent. Crispy onion rings, greasy, arterial. Slaw with poppy seeds, a stroke of brilliance. Sweet potato fries had us praising sweet baby Jesus.
With food piled high we swapped dishes. The Beef Short ribs (9.95) were done just right. Falling off the bone and came with a soy-honey sauce packed with umami but of the same consistency as the teriyaki patina we experienced before, messy.
The vege Burrito (8.95) was also done well, no need for meat here, although it doesn't quite match up to the amazing offers from both Wahaca and Poncho 8 just around the corner who between the two of them in my opinion have the Soho burrito market wrapped up.
Being a Bar and Grill I thought I'd check the quality of the meat and went with the 28 day Sirloin (15.95), ordered med rare this came out in shades of pink ranging from the desired med-rare at one end through to med-well at the other. An interesting gamut of 'doneness', but not quite what I was after. The Bearnaise didn't help this, a tepid, out of the pack remedy was slick and greasy.
I longed for dessert. J went for the Toffee Apple Crumble (5.95), enough for two but i'd probably say that after a full meal this would easily do 4. Great value here. I polished a rather tasty cheesecake.
It's 8pm on a Thursday in Soho, you've just finished work and have arranged an impromptu night out with 4 mates. You're hungry and need somewhere to eat but also to drink, for 4, in Soho. Spuntino? And queue for 2 hours? crazy. Wahaca? too expensive, too popular.
Whilst the food may not be a foodies first choice, and the drinks sometimes missing the mark. Giraffe fills a gap in the market for those requiring a prompt meal and a place to start the evening in style.