Hawksmoor Air Street

HAWKSMOOR AIR STREET: Great steak & seafood, among the best in London and the U.K. Photo: Courtesy of Hawksmoor Air Street

 

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HAWKSMOOR AIR STREET
5 Air Street
Piccadilly, Mayfair
London W1J 0AD
United Kingdom
44 20 7406 3980, http://thehawksmoor.com/locations/airstreet/

 

By Scott Harrah

LONDON–Hawksmoor Air Street, like all the Hawksmoor locations in London, has some of the best steak in the U.K. Two years ago we visited the Hawksmoor Seven Dials and were completely overwhelmed by the high quality of steak and seafood and the superlative service. We were anxious to try another Hawksmoor location to see if it lived up to the glories of the Seven Dials restaurant, and we were not disappointed.

Take some extra time to find the restaurant since the entrance is on a short stretch of Air Street between Piccadilly Circus and Regent Street. It is definitely worth seeking out this hidden-away Central London gem. Dining at Hawksmoor Air Street is a glorious experience from the moment one walks through the door and is greeted by the cheerful hostesses. As soon as one heads upstairs, expect to be instantly transported to a world of old-school elegance, from mirrored walls to stained-glass windows, polished veneer and banquettes. While the Seven Dials location has a pub feel, Hawksmoor Air Street is more Art Deco and a bit on the posh side, but still casual and hardly stuffy.

The menu, of course, is the star attraction at any Hawksmoor location, and Hawksmoor Air Street does not disappoint with its wide selection of seafood, juicy steaks and remarkable side dishes. There is an extensive wine list and what the British call “pre-prandials” (cocktails), from Champagne Charlie (Gin, lemon, seasonal fruit syrup and Champagne) for £12.50 to Messenger’s Tonic (Gin, Lillet Blanc, Sherry and tonic cocktail) for £10 to the Hawksmoor Collins (Gin, lemon, Campari, bitters and soda) for £9.75.

 

 

Hawksmoor Air Street

Roast scallops, with white port & garlic is a great starter. Photo: Scott Harrah

For starters, choose from roast scallops with white port and garlic, potted smoked mackerel, smoked salmon, Half Dartmouth lobster (£5.00/100h). Old Spot belly ribs, potted beef with bacon and Yorkshires, filet carpaccio with porcini, Parmesan and scallops, Evesham asparagus, buttered or hollandaise; Kohlrabi salad with celery hearts and spenwood cheese; and Doddington Caesar.

Steaks are the main reason to come to the Hawksmoor Air Street. From Chateaubriand (£13.00/100g) to Porterhouse (£9.25/100g); T-bone (£8.25/100g); bone-in prime rib (£8.25/100g) to filet (300g) for £35.00; sirloin (400g) for £29.50; Rib-eye (400g) for £31.50; rump (300g) for £19.50. Plus, sides such as maple bacon for £4.25; two fried eggs for £3.00; grilled bone marrow for £4.50. and a half Dartmouth lobster for £5.00/100g. Steaks all come with a fabulous choice of sauces: Peppercorn, bone marrow gravy, Anchovy hollandaise or Stichelton hollandaise.

However, seafood lovers will not be disappointed. Choose from turbot (grilled over charcoal) for £13.00 for 100g or royal bream, baked in paper with garlic, rosemary, and chili, for just £20. Dover sole, grilled over charcoal or Meuniere, is £36. Monkfish, grilled over charcoal, is £24 to £48.

 

Hawksmoor Air Street

Juicy and tender Chateaubriand served with a side of mashed potatoes & gravy. Photo: Scott Harrah

Being a carnivore who loves good steak, I asked our pleasant and helpful waiter Jordan to recommend the best steak,and he suggested the Chateaubriand, served medium rare, with the savory peppercorn sauce. He also insisted I try the roast scallops with white port and garlic and a side of beef dripping fries and mashed potatoes and gravy for my main course. I ordered a glass of lovely Malbec that went great with everything. The scallops were fresh and succulent, and the Chateaubriand was outstanding—a tender chunk of thick, lean but slightly marbled Nirvana.

 

Hawksmoor Air Street

Hawksmoor smoked salmon as a starter. Photo: Scott Harrah

My dining partner was feeling a bit under the weather and was not in the mood for a heavy steak, so Jordan suggested the sea bream with Jersey Royal potatoes. He enjoyed the sea bream and found it light fare for a hot British summer night. For a starter, he chose the light and flavorful Hawksmoor smoked salmon.

The Hawksmoor Air Street includes an Express Menu (Pre-Theatre) with two courses for £25 and three courses for £28 . Starters include potted smoked mackerel, potted beef and bacon with Yorkshires or Kohlrabi salad with celery hearts and spenwood cheese. Main courses include Royal bream with garlic, rosemary and and chili, or ash-baked root vegetables with spelt (known as hulled wheat in the USA) and curd’s cow. Choose from one of the following sides: Triple-cooked chips; baked sweet potato, creamed spinach or lettuce and herb salad. For dessert (puddings), try peanut butter shortbread, sticky toffee pudding or passion-fruit cheesecake.

Sides are also something one simply cannot miss at Hawksmoor Air Street, from the beef dripping fries (£4.50) to triple-cooked chips (£4.50); mashed potatoes and gravy (£4.50); Jersey Royals (£5) to baked sweet potato (£4). Also look for macaroni and cheese (£5.50); creamed spinach (£5.50); spinach, lemon and garlic (£5.25); roasted field mushrooms (£4). plus a selection of salads for £4.

We loved the beef dripping fries and the mashed potatoes and gravy, as well as the Jersey Royals (we couldn’t decide which we liked best as they were all superb). This reviewer is proud to be of Irish-American extraction, so I will eat and relish potatoes of any type, shape or form.

 

Hawksmoor Air Street

Sticky toffee pudding with warm clotted cream. Nobody does it better than Hawksmoor. Photo: Scott Harrah

For dessert, we both split an order of the Hawksmoor’s famous sticky toffee pudding with warm, sinful clotted cream. Just like at the Seven Dials location, the Hawksmoor Air Street’s sticky toffee pudding is among the best you will find in London, if not all of England. The dessert is not well known in America but it is a British staple, consisting of a rich sponge cake filled with chopped dates and sultanas, topped with either ice cream or warm clotted cream. The Hawksmoor’s version is served with the latter and it is decadently divine. It goes exquisitely with a cup of American coffee or espresso.

Now that we’ve enjoyed two different Hawksmoor locations in London, we’re convinced nobody does steak and upmarket British comfort food quite like the Hawksmoor. They truly have some of the best steak and service of anywhere in the U.K. If you visit London this summer or autumn, be sure to try one of the Hawksmoor restaurants. Hawksmoor is great for both pre-theatre dinner or a long, leisurely meal out in the British capital.

 

Edited by Scott Harrah
Published July 4, 2017
Reviewed on June 23, 2017 in London

 

 

Hawksmoor Air Street

HAWKSMOOR AIR STREET: Grass-fed, bone-in prime rib. Photo: Courtesy of Hawksmoor Air Street

 

Hawksmoor Air Street

HAWKSMOOR AIR STREET: Cocktails. Photo: Courtesy of Hawksmoor Air Street

 

Hawksmoor Air Street

HAWKSMOOR AIR STREET: Great fish dishes. Photo: Courtesy of Hawksmoor Air Street

 

Hawksmoor Air Street

HAWKSMOOR AIR STREET: Stained glassed windows in a gorgeous Art Deco setting in the Piccadilly/Mayfair area of London. Photo: Courtesy of Hawksmoor Air Street

 

 

HAWKSMOOR AIR STREET: Bar with great pre-theatre cocktails. Photo: Courtesy of Hawksmoor Air Street

 

Hawksmoor Air Street

HAWKSMOOR AIR STREET: Cozy yet upmarket atmosphere. Photo: Courtesy of Hawksmoor Air Street

 

 

Hawksmoor Air Street

FABULOUS STEAK & SEAFOOD: Some offerings at Hawksmoor Air Street. Photo: Courtesy of Hawksmoor Air Street

 

Hawksmoor Air Street

HAWKSMOOR AIR STREET: Conveniently located near all the theatres in Piccadilly Circus/Mayfair. Photo: Courtesy of Hawksmoor Air Street

Hawksmoor Air Street

HAWKSMOOR AIR STREET: The interior. Photo: Courtesy of Hawksmoor Air Street

Hawksmoor Air Street

HAWKSMOOR AIR STREET: Interior with stained glass windows. Photo: Courtesy of Hawksmoor Air Street

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