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Steak & Lobster, Radisson Blu Edwardian, Reviewed

Jonathan Schofield thinks this is what L'Entrecote should have been

Written by . Published on February 26th 2014.

Steak & Lobster, Radisson Blu Edwardian, Reviewed

THIS IS what L'Entrecote should have been like.

Cracking the claws with various torture instruments presented on the plate to get the stronger flesh hidden away was all part of the fun

Remember L'Entrecote the King Street exercise in lazy restauranting that closed last year? The latter was an essay in mono-vision offering only green salad, steak, arrogance and intransigence. 

Steak & Lobster also offers brevity of menu but with a balance of yin and yang, of fish and meat. It costs £17 for a filling meal (rather than L'Entrecote's £21) for either steak or lobster. There's even a veggie burger for those who don't eat either. 

Menu - happily straightforwardMenu - happily straightforward

The lobster I had was a little cracker, very sweet, very tender, blasting the seaside at me and bringing visions of piled lobster pots in Padstow harbour. A minute longer in the steamer and it would have been ruined. Here the timing was good.

Of course cracking the claws with the various torture instruments presented on the plate to get to the stronger flesh hidden away was all part of the fun. The struggle needed with our crustacean friends adds to the drama of munching them. Eating becomes a scrap to scrape out all the last bits of succulent flesh, like a dog worrying a bone to get to the marrow. 

It wasn't a big thing this lobster it must be said, but for £17 with all the trimmings it did the trick beautifully. By the way the fries are excellent and contain enough potato to make them feel real. The green salad is nicely cheesed up with Parmesan, given body with shallots and scale with croutons. The shallots are the key.

You can have as many extra portions of fries and salad as you require which is a good touch. They also come with the steak. 

Lobster of love - cracking fun


Lobster of love - cracking fun

The steak was a fine 10oz rib, that was perhaps a tad over-cooked for the requested medium rare but not disastrously so. A mistake was made with the sauce, a garlic, white wine and mushroom pond that was too runny, too weak and a waste of space. A proper Bearnaise would be better. Or maybe go with the Stilton or the peppercorn. 

However the sauces cost another £2.50 so I recommend you forget them and try the English mustard that arrives on the table with tomato sauce for nothing.  

The steakThe steak

Wine can be an issue when trying to match with both steak and lobster but, if red is your thing, go with the Don Jacobo Rioja Crianza (£7.10 a glass). The lobster can stand it, just, and the steak will love it.

Matching fish with red isn't the sharp intake of breath it used to be. And in the end a meal is about enjoying the moment not getting the scientists in to check if the acidities marry up.  

Then again a jug of tap water might be adequate as it was for me.

Steak & Lobster lies in the Radisson Blu Edwardian Manchester, aka The Free Trade Hall. It's located on the other side of reception and snug against Windmill Street in the old Cafe Alto space. The restaurant room provides a harmless enough environment but is a bit too 'hotel'.

Steak & Lobster - a bit hotel

Steak & Lobster - a bit too much hotel

The management might want to darken the space, give it more personality.   

Still I enjoyed this experience.

In fact the lobster deal is already sirening me back. The only realnegative is after leaving I realised Steak & Lobster do a knickerbocker glory (£4.75). I love knickerbocker glories.

Maybe they should change the name to Steak & Lobster & Knickerbocker Glory. It'd be a marketing triumph.

For me at least. 

You can follow Jonathan Schofield on Twitter here @JonathSchofield or connect via Google+

Steak & Lobster, Radisson Blu Edwardian Hotel, Free Trade Hall, Peter Street, City Centre, M25GP. 0161 835 8903

Rating: 14.5/20 (please read the scoring system in the box below, venues are rated against the best examples of their kind) 

Food:  7.5/10 (lobster 8, steak 7.5)
Service: 4/5
Ambience: 3/5

PLEASE NOTE: Venues are rated against the best examples of their kind: fine dining against the best fine dining, cafes against the best cafes. Following on from this the scores represent: 1-5 saw your leg off and eat it, 6-9 get a DVD, 10-11 if you must, 12-13 if you’re passing,14-15 worth a trip, 16-17 very good, 17-18 exceptional, 19 pure quality, 20 perfect. More than 20, we get carried away.

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29 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

Georgina Hague shared this on Facebook on February 26th 2014.
AVOFebruary 26th 2014.

Anyone heard more whispers about Burger & Lobster coming to Harvey Nics or is the project dead in the water so to speak?

3 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousFebruary 27th 2014.

An unlikely prospect given how dead this place is. Well, 'was' might be more appropriate following this review!

AVOFebruary 27th 2014.

Burger and Lobster are a totally different operator based in London. All of their venues are packed to the rafters on every night of the week. They already operate out of Harvey Nics in London and were planning on doing the same up here.

AnonymousFebruary 27th 2014.

I know who they are! L'Entrecote are 'packed to the rafters' too in London. Where did you read they were heading up this way anyway?

AnonymousFebruary 27th 2014.

Been here twice but not overly bowled over, the steak is just okay - service was really good on both occasions but the drinks prices are extortionate (£7.50 for an Amaretto & orange; single shot!). Also a service charge was added to our bill (for two people, which I think was naughty and a bit shameless) which from memory was 15%! It is discretionary though. I'm happy to tip but when told to do it, it's bloody off-putting. Not a patch on L'Entrecote in my opinion but it's good value for the food cost - just watch out for the drinks prices and service charge; this is where they make their money back!

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousFebruary 28th 2014.

Agreed re l'entrecote. I still can't understand why (some) people didn't get it here, despite being so popular in other major cities. The best quality steak and cheeses around and at reasonable prices! As you can probably tell, I still miss it :( Radisson is nice but not a patch on l'entrecote...

user4493February 27th 2014.

8 of us went for a 50th birthday celebration last year and will not be returning. Food overcooked and tasteless, service terrible. We were put up on a mezzanine level and virtually ignored. No free refills of anything, and very poor value for money. Suggest you and your readers take a trip to Spain - even the transport cafes serve up better food and for around £7 per head for a 3 course meal with alcohol. Juicy, fresh seafood cooked with flavour and fantastic quick service. What a disappointment this place (and a lot of our so-called trendy restaurants) is!

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousFebruary 27th 2014.

I find it easier to get to Steak & Lobster. The man-Seville flight times never suit pre theatre, you know? Spain Confidential however, the readership probably find your comment useful.

KamilaFebruary 27th 2014.

Food mediocre. Wine v pricey, service terrible.

JimtoFebruary 27th 2014.

Other than the price, which should have been £17/£18, i've never understood the criticism of L'Entrecote from ManCon. Even in it's demise you're still at it. Many lesser restaurants have had better support. Alto has always been a good spot to watch the sport in peace, and with the food works well in that format. Go to Grill on the Alley if you want that menu and a restaurant experience.

6 Responses: Reply To This...
JayFebruary 27th 2014.

I agree with this. What's the obsession about kicking L'Entrecote? It's a very successful model in larger cities but Manchester obviously didn't like it. Fine.

JonathanFebruary 27th 2014.

Totally agree- it borders on a personal grudge!

Charlie ButterworthFebruary 27th 2014.

I think a point is being made that this place does fish and veggie burgers but is still the same style of no-nonsense menu

JimtoFebruary 27th 2014.

It is Charlie, but still with a dig at the ex-place on King St. There was a lot of inexplicably negative opinion around the project which did nothing to help a decent new food venture in the city, and it remains so.

AnonymousFebruary 27th 2014.

JS does seem to have some sort of grudge against L'Entrecote. It's a little odd. Still i'm sure the one in Paris is still doing well.

AnonymousMarch 1st 2014.

It is disgraceful and petty for ManCon which is still criticising L'Entrecote which offers fantastically cooked steaks and excellent wine at reasonable prices. It seems ManCon would be more than happy for Manchester to be full of burger bars and other American inspired rubbish. JS and others should grow up.

Andrew JonesFebruary 27th 2014.

I found it "ok". Agree it feels to hotel-y.

JoanFebruary 27th 2014.

I never went to L'Entrecote. That's because I and my friends are Mancunians or adoptive Mancunians and didn't want to be told what to eat. We like places that allow meat eaters, vegetarians and those who wish to avoid red meat to all eat together, in the same restaurant at the same table. That way we can talk to one another. This place is a possibility.

5 Responses: Reply To This...
AnonymousFebruary 27th 2014.

You didn't go because you didn't want to be told what to eat (although you weren't 'told' - you know in advance what it was about, and opted not to go). It's nothing to do with being Mancunian or "adoptive Mancunian".

DavidFebruary 27th 2014.

By that logic Joan you would not approve of Vegetarian restaurant either or a fish restaurant.

John MatherFebruary 27th 2014.

What's it got to do with being Mancunian (don't get the adoptive bit - if you're not Mancunian you're from somewhere else). Either way no-one's telling anyone anything. It was a straightforward offering and, if you chose to try it, was incredibly tasty and good value.

JoanFebruary 28th 2014.

Simple. Everyone in the party had to order steak. Therefore plenty of people never took their friends in there, never suggested having a meal there, and never recommended it to anyone who might want to have the option of a choice.

JoanFebruary 28th 2014.

.....and David. I don't 'disapprove' of restaurants. However I would not go to a fish restaurant which sold only one type of fish. Nor would I dine at a vegetarian restaurant which offered only one main dish. It's the absence of choice which is the problem. Customers stay away, and the restaurant fails. In the larger markets of Paris and London there is more room for a niche restaurant specialising in only one dish.

MaggieFebruary 27th 2014.

Picky, bitchy load of kn*bs on this rant. It spoils my enjoyment of the site. If you want to be a picky, bitchy kn*b, join GM Skeptics, they enjoy having a good snigger and bitch at other people's expense and spreading their hubris amongst each other. Just leave this forum out of it

1 Response: Reply To This...
Charlie ButterworthFebruary 28th 2014.

Maggie - well said

AnonymousFebruary 28th 2014.

Well I'll say something, it's not San Carlo.

1 Response: Reply To This...
AnonymousFebruary 28th 2014.

Stick to saying nothing...

adele bFebruary 28th 2014.

steak n lobster

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