113 Jermyn St, London, SW1Y 6HJ Directionshttps://www.yell.com/biz/rowley-s-london-367170/#view=map
"Situated in the home of the original Walls Butcher Shop and located on the very traditional Jermyn Street, St James's, London, Rowleys Restaurant has kept the charm and history of the 19th century building alive. With the original tiles lining the walls and the soft lighting the restaurant offers a relaxed and comforting atmosphere. The British themed menu changes regularly but always includes the famous entrecote steak and secret herb butter sauce which is left to sizzle over a burner on the table and accompanied by unlimited french fries. Great for business lunches and pre theatre." Produced by http://LondonVideoReviews.co.uk
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The Restaurant is situated on Jermyn street in the heart of London's theatre land. The decor is faithful to its 18th century origin as the birthplace of the Walls sausage, withought the smell of abattoir and is warm and inviting.
We were sat next to a table of seven somewhat exuberant aging yuppies and their offspring who were well on their way through several apperatifs.
Having been seated i noticed our menu's were tiny. Not the luscous culinary thesis afforded to our neighboring table of seven, but something that looked like a post-it-note of side orders. When i asked whether there was another menu i was informed that for tables of 8 or more, there is a limited menu and that in order to keep a busy service moving we could not have a larger choice of food.
I told our waiter that we had not been advised of this when we booked. Had they had done so, we would have booked elsewhere. This would have been fine, but here is the point where i received the worst restaurant service i have ever had, ever, touch black to infinity, no return, fact....
"I'm pretty sure you would have been told about it, but, i'll speak to the manager and see what she says", dismissive shrug, storm off..
Now, Rowleys, here's the truth of the matter you haven't grasped. No-one owes you a successful business. Times are hard, resources are scarce. Customers do not wish to be called liars expressly or by implication.
The manager subesequently appeared and re-reiterrated the restaurant's postion. She told me it was busy and the kitchen needed to keep things moving. By this point i and my party are ready to blow this place out and head to KFC. No meal is worth that kind of nonsense. Nevertheles, she would speak to the kitchen and see if they could accomodate. I'm not kidding you, the look on her face held nothing but disdain as she walked away only to return a minute later with an enormous smile and the words " not a problem" spilling from her lips like a heroic save the day eulogy.
Thanks, for saying we can have what we had only been led to expect. By the way. Rowleys was a good third empty. Give me strength.
So to the food. I ordered the scallops to begin followed the by 10 ounce Entrecote. The scallops were forgettable but i couldn't wait for the famed slab of meat. It arrived on a metal platter, sliced, dripping in the house sauce and placed on a fondue flame to keep it warm. Sides are £5 a pop but you get limitless (really) fries.
The quality of the meat was very good and was cooked perfectly.
Overall it was a good experience marred by careless and sloppy customer service. There are too many good steak restaurants to make me return. Real shame.
ps, i'm a chef in a multi-award winning restaurant. I would sack any member of staff who dealt with customers like this.
Old Fashion Dinning4
The service was brillant and we were looked after very well. The menu is small but caters to everyones needs (fish, meat, vegetarian etc). The food was a amazing and full of flavour. As the steak we recommended to us, that what we want for. A large steak cooked to perfection with a herb butter on top. It was succulent and left us feeling very full. It's a little pricey, hence the reason why we took my parents (cheeky I know, but it wasn't overtly expensive), but we all had a great meal.
The only negative is the endless chis you get with your steak (don't be fooled by free food). These were shoe string fries and we wished that they were slightly chunkier. I'm being picky now!
..on a bad day2
Lets start with the good points. The inside decoration is beautiful with its originally tiled walls and ceilings and great stained glass windows... except from that I'm having trouble thinking of other good points.
Now I do accept that restaurants can have some bad days. This one was definitely one. Now I don't quite understand why since the restaurant wasn't full at lunch time but everything was extremely slow. It took one hour from the moment we ordered our entrecote for it to be delivered. The shocking thing was that once it arrived it was lukewarm at best. Thus prompting the thought that it had been ready for some time but the waitress forgot all about it.
So slow service and cold food. When I was a student I had worked as a waiter and in those situations I offer the table some free coffees and see if I can remove parts of the bill or at least seriously discount it. No such thinking was made by our waitress and it was only after I strongly complained that action was taken and our bill was reduced.
So why the 2 stars instead of 1. Because as I said I do believe that restaurants can have some bad days. Now I wouldn't go back to Rowley unless if I was invited there. For now if I want a great entrecote with delicious fries I'll stick to Le Relais de Venise
Old-Style British Class3
We dined here for lunch with some friends from out of town. Our meal was very leisurely and enjoyable. Service was great - our waiter was hilarious and the food was really good.
We has the Rowley's house special - Entrecote Steak and secret herb butter, which is left to sizzle on the table, and is accompanied by an unlimited supply of 'the best French fries in London' (or so they claim). If you manage to get through all of your steak they will bring you out another serve for only a few pounds extra.