4 February 2014

A Saturday Night in the City - Steam & Rye / Discount Suit Company

Towards the end of last year, Steam & Rye opened its doors in the City of London to quite a fanfare. It's the brainchild of Nick House of Mahiki, Bodo Schloss and Whisky Mist fame. Having a partner in crime in the form of Kelly Brook certainly didn't hurt with the publicity either. The venue is the old Bank of New York building on Leadenhall Street and the decor is inspired by Grand Central Station. It's pretty impressive.

Mary and I visited on a Saturday night - quite possibly the first time I'd ever ventured into the heart of the city on a weekend (other than to work some overtime back in the day!). But at Steam & Rye it's a very busy night and the place gets packed out until the early hours.

We were here to try the cocktails, taste the menu and soak up the atmosphere in this Prohibition-era themed bar.

In case you wondered, my dress is from Elise Ryan and you can buy it here

When it comes to cocktails, the mixologists at Steam & Rye will basically make you whatever you want. They have all the classics you can think of as well as some of the more unique and playful creations - drinks served in flaming fire buckets and old boots!

As nice as they were, I wouldn't necessarily recommend you visit here purely for the cocktails. It was the food - the hearty meaty American food - that really impressed me. If you go, you have to try their jumbo BBQ chicken wings with blue cheese dip. As if the wings weren't fabulous enough on their own with the succulent chicken and tangy sauce, the little pot of blue cheese loveliness takes it to another level!

Mary loved her cheese and bacon burger and my smoked pulled pork sandwich was as good as the one I fell in love with at Diablos Cantina in Vegas (but served as a more managable portion!). Our side dishes of creamy macaroni cheese and onion rings were also fab.

I wasn't sure whether I'd like Steam & Rye. What with all the tabloid publicity and the celebrity links, I thought it might have been a little on the pretentious side and perhaps the food would be none too special. It was a relief to find that the waitresses and bar staff were as friendly as could be, greeting everyone with a smile and the food lovingly created and authentically American. The only downside for me was the wedding reception-type band that came on during our meal, sang a few cheesy tunes and made it that little bit too loud to chat. To overcome this issue we headed down to the basement bar which was a quieter, more intimate affair.

Before it got too late (Mary had her last train to catch) I thought it was the perfect opportunity to visit a new cocktail den located on the back streets of Liverpool Street called the Discount Suit Company. Only a bright light above the black door gives you any indication that there's any life on this street! In what was originally a storeroom for the old suit company above, this little downstairs bar with its low ceilings and motown playing in the background makes you feel like you've stumbled upon a secret.

The atmosphere here is informal, relaxed and perfect for a few drinks after a hard day in the office. They serve a strong list of cocktails thoughtfully constructed by the mixologists as well as beer and wine served in glass water bottles! A hangout with tons of character which was an endearing little place to end our night.

Steam & Rye
147 Leadenhall Street

Discount Suit Company
29 Wentworth Street
E1 7TB

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  1. Charlie has been on about this place for ages, now I see why! The pulled pork sandwich looks delish :)

    Josie xoxo
    Fashion Mumblr

    1. It was seriously delicious, I love pulled pork. So naughty but so good! x

  2. You always go to the best places!

  3. Oh I've heard so much of Steam & Rye all the way up North. It looks incredible.. And that burger?! Crumbs, I'm drooling already!
    I swear you only go to the best places Caroline.. Definitely not fair!
    P.S. Love the dress :)
    Emily xx
    My Ginger Bread Journey

    1. That's the joy of living in London I suppose...the choice of venues! It seems endless! I do try to dig out the best ones though... x

  4. That place looks like so much fun! That fire cocktail is right up my street.
    I've actually never heard of Steam & Rye before, but it's going up on my list. I'm also never in the city itself for nights out, but it might be an option for an after work cocktail!

    {Teffy's Perks} X

    1. i used to go out in the city all the time when I worked up there but not so much these days. They are opening some great new venues though, I'm going to keep my eyes and ears open! x

  5. What two brilliant recommendations - will add these to the list next time I venture out of West London!

  6. Cocktails look great!
    Have you ever tried Lounge Bohemia in Shoreditch? It's really chilled and there's a no suits policy (as much as I love a man in a suit, it makes me feel a little more at ease knowing it's not super smart or full of city businessmen...) It is a little pricey though.
    Get the bubblebath martini if they still do it - comes with a mini rubber duck floating on a load of bubbles on top of your drink!

    1. No I've never been to Lounge Bohemia but having read this and looked it up, I really want to! It's on my list, thank you! :) x

  7. I love the Grand Central theme, that centrepiece is just stunning!
    So lovely to have a catch up with you before your socialising evening, can't wait to read all about the holiday
    x x x
    {The Lobster & Me}

  8. Just gorgeous! Love these pictures!

    I wish I could visit right now.

  9. Ahh I went here with the girls too and I had the exact same cocktail as you, in the fire red bucket! We said EXACTLY the same as you regarding the in house band, we didn't want to sound like a bunch of old fuddy duddies but the band were playing so loud; with music that wasn't the best (ahem), that we couldn't even here each other most of the time! They'd do so much better with an in house DJ, plus I wasn't a fan of the red lighting in the ladies toilets downstairs, you know that must have been a man who designed those! lol
    Other than that the cocktails were great xx


  10. It looks like you had an amazing time!

  11. You look fabulous! I love the atmosphere of the restaurant, I envy your social life. xo


  12. Great review, I've been meaning to go here it looks so much fun especially the food and cocktail list!

    Hanh x | hanhabelle


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