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Smokestak is located in the Shoreditch District. This district is known for its hip, trendy artsy style. Its most popular feature is the street art that is scattered throughout the district. Entrance to the building gave a feel of entering into an oven or an antique safe. Smokestak is owned by Barbadian David Carter. He is the son of Robert Carter who works within Sun Group making the experience almost familial.

Service

One continual theme throughout our trip to London was the quality of service and this continued with our visit to Smokestak. When we arrived we were warmly greeted and shown to our table. We were fortunate to meet David who was very friendly and took the time to have a chat with our COO Danielle St. John.

The staff were prompt in distributing the menus and bringing water to our table. When we finished ordering, we were served our food timely. In a restaurant that was ¾ full it felt as if we were the only ones there.

Design

The decor of the inside leaned heavily on the use of heavy wood (for the furniture) and dark colours (for the walls and glass). It gave the feel of being inside an antique butcher shop. I later discovered it was designed to resemble a smoker and I have to say, that feel was excellently accomplished. The cutlery and plates also kept with the design of the interior and they too were black. Even the windows were painted with dark paint around the edges to give the “smoked” look!

The layout of the restaurant was very open while the black interior created the idea of privacy. It is a very creative design. The tables ranged from intimate two seaters to large six seaters. There was also a 12 seater for larger groups. As there is only one 12 seater I would recommend making a reservation before going with large groups. The kitchen is a workshop design allowing an intimate relationship with chefs and the patrons as you can see them work.

The most important note about the decor of the building is the atmosphere, it felt like London. I am noting this point because it was the most significant thing about my Smokestak (and in some ways my London) experience. As a first time visitor I was looking into buildings as we drove from the airport and (combined with what is seen on television) I imagined what being in those stores would be like. When we were in Smokestak it brought together all that I had imagined into reality.

Food

The majority of the menu catered to the meat lover (beef and pork) with a few selections for the seafood lover. There are also a few dishes for the vegetarian, showing the great versatility of the restaurant. We chose the option of each choosing a different dish and sharing to get the best taste of the great variety offered. As stated earlier the food service was excellent, when our meals started, they never stopped coming until our order was complete. Often we were hardly through one dish when others arrived.

Each dish we ordered had great taste; the seasonings used in London are different to what is used here, however I am 100% sure everyone from our region would have enjoyed each dish. My favourite dish of the night was the Pork Belly Rib with cucumber pickle. It was one of the best pork dishes I have had (second only to jerk pork from Jamaica). The texture and the flavours combined to form a mouthwatering experience. I highly recommend it. My surprise dish was the Crispy Ox cheek; it was a crunchy delight with a tasty anchovy mayonnaise that truly brought out the flavor.
If you have a sweet tooth, then you must try the Sticky toffee pudding with clotted ice cream. My only comment on it is "you have to have lots of liquid close by" for it is truly on the sweet side!

Price

The menu at Smokestak was very affordable. You can get a complete meal with dessert and drinks for under 50 pounds which is incredible.
Overall the experience at Smokestak was a memorable one and I would definitely return on future visits. Also I would encourage others to not just visit but send your friends to visit as well. Great food with a great ambiance!

 

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