There are two types of people that do January. Those that start their healthy living regimes complete with numerous resolutions, smoothies for breakfast, no alcohol and eating as little calories as possible to offset the Christmas indulgence. Then there are those who see January as one of the bleakest months and in order to survive it, they continue with an eating and drinking regime fit for a king. For the last two years I have been the former so this year I decided it was going to be the latter. Luckily for both, restaurant group Drake and Morgan has a dining offer to suit all with their Reef, Beef and Bubbles January offer. The first, which is exceptional value at just £9.99 and only 500 calories is a main course of the classic ‘surf and turf’ – steak, prawns and salad and a glass of non-alcoholic prosecco. The second offer is an upgrade to lobster, steak and chips and a glass of champagne for £19.99. So Belle decided to beat the January blues and head out to give it a try.
Drake and Morgan’s latest venture is The Listing in Liverpool Street
Drake and Morgan is a high end group of restaurants and bars throughout London and across the UK. If you haven’t visited a Drake and Morgan restaurant or bar then you certainly must. The group is named after adventurers Sir Francis Drake and Captain Henry Morgan and this whole ethos is applied to every element of the dining and eating experience. Each bar and restaurant is completely unique and features super stylish interiors, thoughtful menus, hand crafted cocktails and buzzing atmospheres. Their latest bar – The Listing – which is conveniently located right next to Canon Street station, is no exception. It boasts double height glass windows a leather clad bar and luxe interiors with gorgeous sheepskin rugs adorning the backs of every chair.
We visited the groups’s flagship restaurant in Kings Cross which is located right next to Google’s shiny new offices, in one of King’s Cross’ new developments. I was immediately struck by the number of people who were sitting outside the restaurant enjoying themselves on a freezing cold winter’s night in early January. The restaurant’s exterior seating is incredibly stylish and inviting and blankets are provided to keep guests warm in the cold months. This is clearly a restaurant that cares about its guests and making them comfortable whatever the weather.
Inside, the restaurant and bar was buzzing. It’s an absolutely huge space but due to clever interior design and sectioning off the bar and restaurant, the interior feels huge enough to get your spacious fix in a way many London restaurants don’t, yet intimate enough to feel cosy and secluded with a variety of different seating options depending on your needs.
The restaurant has also achieved low level ‘hygge’ lighting that a Scandinavian would be proud of. There was a DJ in the downstairs ‘after party’ bar area playing solid laid back house beats and a relaxed and friendly atmosphere.
Our attentive waiter recommend the gin cured salmon and salt pepper squid for starters. These dishes weren’t included in the January offer but we decided they were worth indulging in. The smoked salmon was so beautifully presented it was almost too good to eat. There was a good amount of fish on the plate accompanied by a delicious puree and parmesan crisp. The salt pepper squid was perfectly cooked, fresh and plenty of it.
We enjoyed a succulent no-mess lobster dish
For our mains we both opted for the ‘sinners’ lobster, steak and chips option with the glass of champagne. The house champagne is Pommerey which had the right level of sharpness and fruitiness to go with the lobster. My friend had the steak which was perfectly cooked at medium rare and just the right amount on the dish. As a non-meat eater, I abstained from the steak but thoroughly enjoyed the lobster which was ready to eat with no messy claw picking. There was also a good amount of lobster meat in the dish. As a big fan of ‘thrice cooked chips’, these chips felt as though they had the right level of ‘crispiness’ and were served with a homemade bearnaise sauce.
There is an extensive wine list at the venue. with all wines available by the glass, however we stuck to the one glass of champagne included with the offer. We were both very impressed with the quality of the food which was high standard relaxed modern dining. Now for the desert and coffee. I opted for the crème brulee which was large in size, thick and had a delicious crispy topping. My partner chose the ice-creams which were healthy in size and tasty. My macchiato was well made and nicely bitter. Drake and Morgan also support Water Aid through a partnership with ethical drinks brand Belu. A voluntary £1 is added to the bill for Belu who give 100% of the donations to the charity. As a firm believer that every restaurant and bar must play an active part in the community and society, this is a great charitable partnership by the restaurant group who clearly have a social conscience.
After dinner we meandered through the bar past the open kitchen, and the whole place was still buzzing with a young post-work crowd. Drake and Morgan is clearly a big hit with Kings Cross’ newest and coolest business residents at all times of year and for both food and cocktails alike. It’s affordable luxury at its best with all the elements you could hope for in a relaxed dining occasion. It would be a perfect place for a birthday celebration or large gathering due to its size, affordability, location and great attention to detail. It’s certainly got the ‘cool’ factor to draw in the media crowds, the ‘quality’ factor to please even the fussiest of friends and above all else and with the downstairs ‘after party’ bar – the fun factor.
* Reef, Beef and Bubbles is available at all Drake and Morgan venues throughout January
After 14 years of working for some of London’s top PR and Marketing agencies and a 7 year stint at global alcohol company Diageo, Rachael co-founded up her own PR and Communications agency with a single minded mission to do work that has social impact. With a prestigious National Marketing Award already under her belt and a thriving company, Rachael will provide expert tips, content and insight for Belles who are looking to make the leap, start their own business and become an entrepreneur.
An original Shoreditch girl, Rachael spent 14 years living in the heart of the East End on Brick Lane and is a food and drink lover, twin Mum, and surfing enthusiast. She is happiest in the middle of a festival dancing to house music in the sunshine.