Grill & Bar
Tower Bridge Road
Tel: 020 7378 2456
This bright trendy modern space sitting inside The Bermonsey Square Hotel has recently been launched after a short period under the umbrella of a food TV celebrity. It now has a good footing with simple, honest food that delivers on flavour and value for money.
The booth we sat in was perfect for a family, contained (put the little ones on the inside!) and private. The menu is in front of you in the form of a tablemat. It is divided into small plates, non grills and grills. They also have fish and pie of the day.
Our youngest A, was delighted to find that they had an Angus burger made of proper steak (he dislikes supermarket style burgers because of their lack of taste). But I’m jumping ahead. The starters were very enjoyable with two of them bordering on brilliant. M’s cherry tomatoes roast red onion and croutons salad did lack a little oomph.
It needed to be lifted with a dressing or another ingredient to take it to a new level. A’s breadbox (which was indeed a wooden box) with a variety of breads was great for him. He loves fresh bread and butter and particularly enjoyed the focaccia, which had plenty of herbs.
Now for the two superstars, I had potted trout with slices of Yorkshire pudding and pickle. This was divine, the fresh pudding, light as a feather was the best conduit I have tasted for potted trout. It all seemed to work in harmony and the pickles cut through the creamy trout. The second winner was a simply titled salmon fishcake with spinach liquor. X had chosen this because of his love of fish the cake was crispy and had a punch to be reckoned with while it sat in rich emerald green spinach liquor that was star in its own right a perfect combination that deserves to be tried.
Chef Jiri Sindelar has really made a break from the tired and over priced 70’s menu of the previous proprietor. Now we have modern cooking that also has classics for the less adventurous. The space is really funky as well with seductive lighting and quirky wall displays and lighting.
X had a meat main of Angus rib eye (10oz) for £24, this was good value, it came with excellent chips and a sauce, you can choose from tarragon butter, red wine gravy and green peppercorn. Top notch cooking and meat and perfect in every way, X did let us try a bit but not very much!
M had a lovely smoked haddock with broccoli bubble and squeak with a poached egg and a wholegrain butter sauce. The fish was subtle in its smoking and had been cooked perfectly with a deliciously runny yolk poached egg.
We were on there on a Saturday evening and although not full the restaurant had a real buzz with the perfect service and a clear camaraderie among staff it has an appealing feel to it. GB is one of those places that appears to have arrived fully formed.
A, delighted in his ‘giant’ Angus burger and chips and I chose a new favourite of mine, roast pork belly, black pudding, mashed celeriac & pear, sweet braised red cabbage. This was fatty, crisp and totally fantastic. It had all the right tastes and was a good-sized portion. The mains here are with the exception of the steak are all priced around £14. Good value and I think with its proximity to Borough market and all things foodie will become a big hit, it deserves to.
We had desserts, which mainly sit in the traditional category. M’s individual seasonal crumble with custard in a jug on the side came in an enamel cooking dish for that farmhouse kitchen vibe was crunchy on top and not too sweet inside. A went (predictably) for a chocolate, raspberry roll that came with chocolate goo. This was really a giant Swiss roll with a raspberry smear and chocolate sauce.
He loved it but couldn’t eat it all. If you have two smaller children I’d suggest they share, it is quite rich. X went off piste with a ginger and rhubarb burnt cream and an impossibly thin wafer of rhubarb.
Lightly gingered and tasting accomplished, with a good balance of flavours it was good. It is really easy to overdo ginger but Jiri pulled it off perfectly.
If you find yourself in the vicinity of The Bermondsey Square Hotel and are feeling peckish then I can highly recommend GB Grill and Bar, Jiri is a true master chef who clearly outshines the previous incumbent. And no, John Torode didn’t previously own it!