Last month saw the first restaurants to open at Grey’s Quarter, which is revamping a tired-looking section of Eldon Square into a new £25 million dining hub for the city centre.
While the majority of eateries are well-known chains (Ask Italian, Giraffe, Handmade Burger and TGI Friday), the one that you may not be as familiar with is George’s Great British Kitchen.
This is the second George’s to open (the first being in Nottingham) and pays homage to British fish and chip shops, with hearty cooking combined with a quirky nautical interior, complete with checked table cloths and beach hut booths.
My dining companions and I received the warmest of welcomes when we visited the restaurant last month for lunch, and I was pleased to find the slick and professional service continued throughout our meal – clearly, any teething problems with such a new restaurant had already been ironed out.
The menu is printed on newspaper (a nod to the traditional chip shop wrapping) and is divided into starters, ‘in a bun’ burgers, good old classics and dishes cooked on the Inka charcoal grill.
You’d be hard pushed not to find something to eat at George’s Kitchen, with the stacked fish burger, steak and red wine pie and chicken in a basket pleasing classic palettes, while more adventurous eaters can choose from the likes of katsu chicken goujons, Inka grilled sea bass or a superfood salad.
We tucked into cod pakoras (bite-sized pieces of cod in onion bhaji batter), George’s Squid (squid rings dusted in Old Bay seasoning and spicy chipotle sauce) and pigs under duvets (British bangers on a bed of bubble and squeak mash and a crispy bacon duvet which, admittedly, tasted better than it looked).
We followed these with the chicken in a basket, the Inka grilled wild ocean cod with sweet potato mash and a tomato and herb salad, and the mammoth surf and turf complete with a 28-day aged Hereford breed 8oz ribeye steak and three lemon pepper breaded fresh water king prawns.
The hefty portions at George’s – each main course came with a huge side of chip-shop style chips! – meant dessert was a definite no no and instead, two of us finished off our meal with an espresso.
George’s Great British Kitchen’s wholesome food and friendly staff are well worth a visit during the day.
Its sizeable drinks menu – including range of gin cocktails – and quirky vibe also makes it an attractive option in the evening, too.
Bite-sized pieces of cod in onion bhaji batter with coriander, spring onion and a mint dip
Pigs under duvets
Sausages served on bubble and squeak with crispy bacon and a honey and mustard dressing
Classic George’s Squid
Squid rings with Old Bay seasoning and chipotle sauce served with spring onion and coriander
Chicken in a basket
Butterflied chicken breast in a lemon pepper breadcrumb served with maple grilled smoked bacon, sweetcorn pancakes, coleslaw and chipotle may dip
Inka grilled wild ocean cod
Fillet of cod cooked in the Inka charcoal grill served with sweet potato mash with button mushroom confit and a tomato and herb salsa
Surf ‘n’ turf
28-day Hereford bred ribeye steak, three lemon pepper breaded fresh water king prawns, a deep fried tomato and onion rings