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We have always fancied trying this place as it is always busy and ‘very Hoxton’, so when we got a chance to go, I had high expectations. We have been to the bar area numerous times and this leads onto the restaurant and open kitchen and it always looks rather inviting. It is full of the ‘Hoxton set’ so it tries hard not to look overdone but has a wonderfully relaxed atmosphere.

Saying that, our first impressions of the restaurant itself didn’t start off well; when we arrived we were told we would have to wait as the previous diners sitting in our table had not left yet. Any restaurant that doesn’t leave enough time for over laps seems to care more about money than quality.

We were seated at bench like tables in stalls that were classically 1920s themed and rather suited the Hoxton image of a relaxed yet uber trendy grill.

Having looked at the surprisingly limited and dull menu, we ordered something that we thought would excite my taste buds; scallops and black pudding, but we were extremely disappointed. Although the scallops were cooked well, they lacked flavour and were over powered by the pudding. Our fellow diner had chosen the salt beef hash with poached egg which although doesn’t sound that exciting was really delicious and we regretted our menu choice.

For main course, we had steak with peppercorn sauce and jerk chicken. Although the steak was cooked well, any grill worth its salt can pull off an O.K. steak. The jerk chicken was pretty bland and could hardly be called ‘jerk’ chicken which is classically a spicy Jamaican marinate, instead we were served chicken that was smothered in a lemon and herb dressing. Our friends also ordered the pulled pork, it was the best flavoured thing on the menu and tasted delicious; it was not strongly flavoured but was so tender.  Again wrong menu choice – damn!

This was followed by a brownie and a caramelised pear cheesecake, both disappointing as they were stodgy and the flavours could have been emphasised more. Not really worth mentioning to be honest.

To summarise; great atmosphere and true Hoxton vibe but the menu and flavours were a real disappointment.

Sex Drugs and Bacon Rolls gives the Hoxton Grill:

            Food                       Atmosphere                      Service

2 Stars3 Stars3 Stars

N.B. The menu could do with getting a few pointers from the cocktail menu which was varied and with expertly balanced flavours.

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