Unfortunately Bowler Bar & Grill closed its doors in mid June 2009 as their lease had come to an end. They continue to run their butchers on Marylebone High Street and I wish them the best of luck with future ventures. Bowler will be missed!

Tucked away on Pond Place just off Fulham Road (South Ken end), Bowler Bar & Grill is a fantastic find!

Their speciality is of course steak although they also cater for vegetarians (and thank god) having dragged my girlfriend Kaori along on several occasions! As with any restaurant, the key to good food is good ingredients and Bowler are lucky enough to have their own up-market butchers, The Natural Kitchen on Marylebone High Street.

Easily missed with its discrete entrance at the bottom of a flight of stairs the restaurant is surprisingly spacious and beautifully kitted out with quirky antique chairs and the occasional bowler hat. The atmosphere is informal and inviting unlike so many of the pretentious yet surprisingly plain restaurants I’ve been to. They’ve been generous with space in the layout of the tables and consequently it’s a great place to relax with friends without having to cross conversations.

I’ve never tried their alcoholic drinks although their bar looks rather impressive and I hear they pride themselves on their cocktails.

So on to the food. I absolutely love my steak but being the fastidious eater I am, can’t stand the sight of fat. I therefore always have the filet steak, which as it happens is an excellent choice here. We usually book on the toptable offer which means half price mains if you order a starter bringing a borderline greedy 400g filet down from £36 to fabulous £18. I’d recommend the brandy based peppercorn sauce to go with and perhaps a side of roasted honey glazed parsips and carrots. The steak is served with a few a sprinkling of hand cut chips and a couple of roasted baby tomatoes – a nice touch. Needless to say, the steak is consistently superb and usually cooked spot-on (medium rare). I’ve been to Goucho and Morton’s and this is, in my opinion, better.

Working backwards their starters are excellent and generously proportioned (so don’t fill yourself up!). The two soups I’ve had were delicious and fresh. The bread is a good choice too. I used to go for pan fried mushrooms on toast but that has since been reomved from the menu.
The staff are welcoming, friendly and efficient without getting in your face. They always encourage you to fill out a survey form after your meal so they obviously take customer service seriously – and it shows.

So in summary one of the finest steak restaurants I’ve been to and a well hidden secret although becoming increasingly popular. Tremendous value for money on a toptable offer but I’d still be coming here without it. If you’re on a budget try the £10 burger which is as good as any locally.

Bowler Bar & Grill
2A Pond Place
Chelsea
London SW3 6QJ
Tel: 0207 5895876
www.bowlerbarandgrill.co.uk

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Bowler Bar & Grill