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Tender steak and well-cooked scallops at Bexley's Miller & Carter restaurant
It was quite an adventure, journeying out to distant Bexley from deep south-east London. A map was required after alighting from the train from London Bridge.
It was nice though, taking the time to seek some semblance of serenity. Often steak houses these days require customers to queue from Soho to Greenwich, sparking a battle for juicy meat and causing cocktail delays. At Miller & Carter there’s an old fashioned feel instead – perhaps suited to families, or get-togethers.
After enjoying the exterior of the building, which is tremendous, my dining partner and I went inside and were seated in a booth. We were soon sipping a Manhattan and a French Martini; the latter sadly failed to match up to its city counterparts but its American partner was decent.
Our starters however were a more impressive arrival. The scallops were delicate and, although the mango sauce beneath them was a touch over-powering, it was used sparingly. Across the table the tempura prawns were also well-received. They were crisp and doused in sweet chilli sauce – a similar combination to their de-shelled fellows, if more gracefully balanced. Overall, for a steak house, both provided a satisfying setup for the cow ahead.
We followed that path, clearly – there seemed little point in trying anything other than what the restaurant bases itself on. Why anyone would visit and go for fish or pasta is beyond me.
I went for sirloin after debating between it and the rib-eye. Alongside another Manhattan, bourbon and cow I find a delightful pairing, it was tender and juicy and came with salad, vegetables and chips – which I tweaked to the sweet potato kind. There was also sauce. And an ‘onion loaf’ that’s basically England’s version of a bhaji. The portions were magnificent.
We also tried the Beef Wellington, which featured a fillet steak that was flavourful for sure, though somewhat overdone. The pastry was crisp and accompaniments of the same virtue as with the sirloin – but everything would’ve been heightened further had it come out of the oven a while earlier. A word must also be said for the Argentinean Malbec here – it was really very nice indeed.
I defy anyone with a normal-sized stomach to tackle a dessert after 12oz of animal or a Wellington the size of a football. If so, good for you, but we decided it’d be wholly unnecessary. We instead happily walked back to Bexley station, content for the most part.
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