Guinea Grill and Namco

On a rare, child free Saturday evening (thanks to my ever patient and understanding mother in law, Carol) I ventured out in the rain to central London for some fun and food with friends.
We started at Namco on the South Bank where, over many floors, they have a selection of arcade games; both new and classic. They also have a bar, bowling, table tennis (I refuse to call it ping pong) and pool.

Our first stop was obviously the bar. A pint of Goose Island IPA and a Gordon’s G&T came in at a little more than £10 which I considered to be pretty reasonable for this area of London. Drinks in hand we had a little look around and found an old school Time Crisis game. We both put our pound coins in, hit the button and then found that co-op wasn’t available. We played separately, cleared through the first level and then my machine froze, crashed and reset itself. Bloody brilliant.

[I would normally insert a photo here. In fact, I have photos of my friend bowling but she would kill me if I posted them!]

We replenished our drinks and decided on a round of bowling. They have 2 sets of lanes at Namco; one upstairs and one downstairs. Each set had six lanes which meant plenty of people could play. The lanes were quite short compared to your normal bowling alley but after a couple of frames we adjusted to this and had a lot of fun. Who won doesn’t matter (it was me!) because it’s the taking part that counts, right?
After this we went and loitered around my friend’s favourite game, Mario Kart, until it became available. We managed 3 races before the queue behind us started getting restless. I could have happily stayed there for hours just playing that!
We went upstairs after Mario and had a look at the area where they have their seaside arcade style games and wasted a few pounds in the drop machines before we got a little bored.

We headed off across the bridge to Westminster and thankfully the rain had now stopped. We dodged the tourists on our way across the bridge and wondered if we were so rude and oblivious when we’re touristing abroad.

Beer and Gin
Black Sheep beer and another G&T

We took the Jubilee Line to Green Park (my friend admitted her heels were a bad choice of footwear for the evening) and stopped off at Henry’s Cafe Bar for a drink while we waited for the third member of our group to arrive.
Once he’d joined us we took the short walk to Guinea Grill via Berkeley Square. Guinea Grill is a restaurant in the back of The Guinea Pub, Mayfair. It’s been in the back of this 400+ year old pub since 1952.

The Guinea, Mayfair
The Guinea, Mayfair

We arrive a few minutes before our booking, our coats were taken and we were shown to our table. As we entered we walked past a fridge full of meat and a smoking hot grill. This sight made me really hungry!
The dining room was split into two small and rather quaint sections. As it was early all the guests had been put into one section which, at times, meant it was quite loud with conversation.

The waiting staff were friendly, attentive and knowledgeable. They were able to recommend the perfect cook for the steak we chose.
We were offered water and cocktails to start but we stuck to water as most of the cocktails were whisky based and not really what we considered pre-dinner drinks.

We chose a Chilean Malbec to accompany our food and it was light enough to work with both starters and main.

Cured duck
Cured duck with celery and walnut relish
Duck pate
Duck liver and pork pâté en croute
Prawn cocktail
Classic prawn cocktail with Marie rose sauce

We each had a starter. I had cured duck with celery and walnut relish and my friends had the prawn cocktail and duck pate, respectively. I’d never had cured duck before but it was delicious. Fatty enough and well cured, in my opinion. The celery and walnut relish acidic enough to balance the fatty duck. I tried the duck pate which was nice but a little bland. The prawn cocktail looked classic and according to one of my companions was “okay”.

Sirloin steak
12 oz Sirloin steak
Beef Wellington
Beef Wellington
Sides
Creamed spinach, Guinea gratin potatoes, Rib steak on the bone

For the main, I had the 12oz sirloin (cooked medium rare), one of my friends had the rib on the bone (cooked medium as per the recommendation) and my other friend had the beef wellington (cooked medium rare). The steaks were excellent. Mine was a little closer to rare than mid rare but it was such a lovely piece of meat there were no complaints from me. We also shared several sides; horseradish mash potato, gratin potatoes, creamed spinach and peas, bacon and baby onions. The mash was smooth and lightly spiced with horseradish and the peas, bacon and baby onions were not to be missed (thanks to Jay Raynor for that recommendation!). I didn’t try the gratin or the spinach but there were none left by the end of the meal so I’ll assume they were good.

By the time we’d gotten through a starter and a main each, as well as a bottle of wine and plenty of water, we had no space left for desserts. The selection for desserts was fairly classic though so we didn’t feel like we would be missing out on anything spectacular.

Huntsman
Huntsman and Co

After dinner we went for a nice stroll around the streets of Mayfair along Saville Row and Jermyn Street. Stopping in front of Huntsman and Sons tailors; the inspiration for Kingsman from the film of the same name.
To end the evening we stopped off at The Admiralty pub just on Trafalgar Square. It’s had a few names over the years but it’s currently a Fullers pub which presumably takes its name from Admiralty Arch just around the corner. It was busy on the main deck and upstairs was for food only so we went down to the “gun deck” which is a fantastic space. It is apparently available to hire out so it’ll definitely be my suggestion for the next staff party. I had a very tasty pint of Sierra Nevada IPA which finished the night off very nicely indeed.
These evenings don’t come along too often so I really appreciate it when they happen. Again, it wouldn’t have happened without the kind assistance of my ever indulgent mother in law.

Guinea Grill was nice, over all. The steak was by far the highlight, which was the point of our visit. The rest of the visit was alright but not spectacular. The decor was dated and in need some TLC. The staff, as I mentioned, were very friendly and attentive. I found the silver service a little over the top for the venue but apparently they’ve been doing it this way for a long time.
I won’t be visiting again but don’t let that put you off. If you go there for a great steak, some tasty sides and good wine then Guinea Grill will fit the bill. Me, I’m on to my next steak restaurant!

39 Comments

  1. January 25, 2018
    Reply

    I am coming to London next week. I am really fond of old ruined pubs, perhaps The Guinea Pub, Mayfair would definitely suit to my linking.

    • January 25, 2018
      Reply

      I wouldn’t say it was an old ruined pub but it’s definigely an old fashioned boozer.

  2. Now I’m hungry, seeing those sirloin steak and beef wellington. Good thing you stroll around Mayfair after dinner 😛

  3. January 25, 2018
    Reply

    I am coming back to London in September. I am a big foodie and love to bar hop. Will check out some of your suggestions!

  4. January 25, 2018
    Reply

    I am due for another trip to London soon. I’ll have to try Namco for a different kind of fun night out!

    • January 25, 2018
      Reply

      Highly recommended! Where else can you play arcade games and have a drink too?!

  5. Chelsea Elizabeth
    January 25, 2018
    Reply

    That sirloin steak looks absolutely incredible! That is definitely what I’d order, well done for me! And I think £10 for drinks is more than reasonable. Looks very delicious Indeed

    • January 26, 2018
      Reply

      £10 for drinks in London is good. Some places you wouldn’t even get 1 drink for that much!

  6. January 25, 2018
    Reply

    I love London to eat out, there is always something delicious waiting to be found! I have never tried the Guinea Pub but the sirloin steak looks so delicious!

  7. January 26, 2018
    Reply

    I LOVE learning about new places to travel! Going to Europe on a trip with the girlfriend in the fall and this may make the list. Thanks 🙂

    • January 26, 2018
      Reply

      Namco is a really big draw for tourists in London. It’s right next to the London Eye and just across the bridge from the Houses of Parliament.

  8. January 26, 2018
    Reply

    I like restaurants with nice decor and service. It is great that you liked the food and staff at Guinea Grill.

  9. January 26, 2018
    Reply

    All that food looks so yummy – especially those starters!!! Great review.

  10. colossalumbrella
    January 26, 2018
    Reply

    Wow! this looks amazing and mouth-watering.

  11. January 26, 2018
    Reply

    Amazing grill options on the plate. Creamed spinach sounds great, though I have never tried it out. I love Guinea gratin potatoes tons.

  12. January 26, 2018
    Reply

    I am sure my partner will enjoy the Guinea Grill as he is all about the steak :))). Those Guinea gratin potatoes look so scrumptious. I need the recipe.

    • January 26, 2018
      Reply

      So do I! Do you reckon if we ask nice enough they’d give it to us?

  13. January 26, 2018
    Reply

    I was in London 5 times and I didn’t know this pub yet! Even more so I thought ruin pubs were just in Budapest! I like this place and I’m sure I’ll pa a visi

  14. January 27, 2018
    Reply

    I think the steak and the beef wellington look perfect! I wouldn’t know which to choose now if I went!

  15. kylieshaynego
    January 28, 2018
    Reply

    Never been to London yet but definitely saving this for later.

    • January 28, 2018
      Reply

      London is one of those places that I think everyone should visit, even if it’s just once.

  16. January 28, 2018
    Reply

    Sounds like a pretty chill night spent with friends. The restaurant that you had dinner in sounds amazing! I would love to go there and check out the food.

  17. Via Bella
    January 28, 2018
    Reply

    That looks so yum! Especially when you couple it with a night of bowling.

    • January 29, 2018
      Reply

      I lived in London for over 10 years now and it’s fantastic. You should come and visit!

  18. January 29, 2018
    Reply

    Oh my! These foods looks all so delicious! I wonder if we have this kinds of food here in Philippines. I want to eat them right now.

  19. modernmombiz
    January 30, 2018
    Reply

    That steak looks sooo good. Very interesting foods for sure. I’d love to visit one day and try it for myself.

    • January 30, 2018
      Reply

      It was a very good steak. There are lots of great steak restaurants in London.

  20. January 30, 2018
    Reply

    This makes me want to visit London! Cured duck? I’m in heaven. And that beef Wellington looks phenomenal! Yummers!

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