The area around Moorgate used to be a wasteland of restaurants and bars. Trust me, I worked there for many years. In the old days, your only option for a nice business lunch was Eyre Brothers on Leonard Street or walking all the way over to The Hoxton Hotel. But now South Place has a posh hotel and a new office building and now they’ve got The Kitty Hawk too. The Kitty Hawk bills itself as the “department store of dining.” I’d like to talk to the person/team who came up with this because I don’t entirely get it but I get that it’s a clever marketing ploy so there’s that.
Cook Sister and I were looking for a place for dinner in the city and The Kitty Hawk fit the bill. New, flashy, full of city types on a Friday night. Just like, uh, us.
We had a table downstairs in the spacious formal dining room, tucked into a corner with no one around us. Very bright spot-lighting compensated for the fairly low venue lighting, and the tables were beautifully set. (Almost perhaps too set as it took the staff a few minutes to clear the table once we placed our order.)
We decided to start our meal with steak tartare because that’s the kind of gals we are. I recommend doing the same just for the table-side display. Yup, I’m a sucker for waitstaff preparing my steak tartare for me. We enjoyed this, deeply so. It was a very generous portion and in hindsight, we should have asked for more toast, given how generous a portion it was.
The Kitty Hawk bills itself on its steaks and seafood. We opted for the 10 oz ribeye, medium, along with chunky chips cooked in beef dripping, a side of mac and cheese, and the tomato salad because really, we needed a veg. All of the beef at The Kitty Hawk is Ashdale beef sourced from Alec Jarrett, a West Country family business, founded in 1926 which uses local farmers to rear the best livestock on open farmland. It is dry-aged for 7-10 days and wet-aged for a further 28, resulting in a 35-day aged, tender British steak. We also ordered some sauces on our server’s recommendation: mushroom and mustard (delicious), along with a chimichurri that wasn’t really a chimichurri. (When we pointed this out, it was removed from our tab.)
Cook Sister and I tucked into everything with gusto while solving all of the Internet’s problems and mapping out a plan for making the millions we deserve. The tomatoes were perhaps the only disappointing part of the meal — they were a tad boring and lackluster in comparison to CHIPS and MAC & CHEESE. In hindsight, I would have ordered mushrooms or root vegetables instead. (I’m never a huge tomato fan in the best of times.)
Our server talked us into the flambe at the end of the meal and boy were we glad he did. It was another table-side display, which I really really am a sucker for. The more I eat, the simpler I want my food to be, so this plate of berries and amaretto cream was absolutely perfect. (OK, I know the very fact that fire is involved makes it more complex. But fire has been around for centuries!)
Service throughout was friendly and fun. We were some of the only customers that evening so we were doted on, in a good way.
The Kitty Hawk is the type of place I wish had been around during my many years working within shouting distances of Moorgate. The bar upstairs makes it a nice place for lunch or a drink during the day (especially in the winter with their fire thing going), and the restaurant downstairs is a convenient venue for a business dinner. Old school table-side displays also make it fun. If you work in the area, it is definitely worth a visit. Note that prices are “business dinner” territory — our ribeye was £31.95 so we split it between the two of us.
The Kitty Hawk provided me with an £80 voucher for dinner. Our total bill for the evening came to £115.48 and we tipped on the full amount.