Saturday, 1 June 2013

Miller and Carter - Leeds City Centre


Miller and Carter is a small group of steak-house restaurants in the UK. Previously the only restaurant in Leeds was the one situated in Garforth (see my previous post here) but it would appear they are expanding with the appearance of a new restaurant located on The Headrow on the outside of The Light. 

I was invited along to try out their new restaurant (I'm presuming my previous post aided this). I was happy to oblige as I always like to see how restaurants have progressed especially during expansion - as far too often quality can be substituted for mass...

The table was booked for 7.30pm on a Thursday night and I took TDS along for the ride. 

We arrived about 5-10 minutes early and I 'declared' who I was to the welcome lady (official name?) and we were warmly greeted and shown to a booth - much more desirable and private than the other tables in the middle of the restaurant. 

Menus were dished out and we pondered over the wine list. We ordered a glass of Shiraz-Malbec each (listed as 'recommended' on the menu) and the waitress asked if how we normally like our steaks cooked. TDS replied medium rare (she commented good choice) and said that he should consider the fillet steak and I replied medium to well done (I know I know bad food blogger!) - no comment was made on my preference but she did recommend I get a Ribeye. 

Our wine was brought to us and we were offered water for the table which we gladly accepted. 

I decided to go against a starter due to a previous experience I knew that the side salad you get with your steak main meal is enough to keep your starter cravings at bay. 

TDS decided to get the starter of Black Pearl Scallops. Which is basically a scallop on top of a small round of black pudding with pancetta precariously balanced on top with some balsamic vinegar swished around to make it look pretty (and some green to make the colours balance - not enough to enjoy). 

I tried a mouthful and we both agreed that it was incredibly salty. I really struggled to taste the individual flavours, TDS is in a better place to comment on the black pudding than myself and he said that it wasn't a good selection. 

Next to arrive was our side salads - I noted that these had shrunk from their previous half a lettuce to maybe just about a quarter... This is probably a good thing as most new customers wouldn't expect such a large side salad and be using it as their starter instead of ordering one... (Like me - see above). 

Our mains arrived shortly after so I didn't get chance to engulf all of my salad before everything else arrived. 

We both decided to go with the waitresses suggestion of fillet steak for TDS and rib-eye for me. We both opted for the chips and peppercorn sauce to accompany our meals.

TDS's meal is at the top with his fillet steak and mine underneath with the rib-eye steak (we went with the recommendations). As you can see both steaks were topped with garlic butter \and both had that char-grilled look and to be honest there wasn't much difference between medium rare and medium well done... 

The chips I am glad to report taste EXACTLY the same as the ones I've had in Garforth - they are great. I love a good chip especially with a bit of skin on. 

Each steak main comes with onion loaf  something I usually look forward to - its sort of like an English version of an onion bhaji. However this time... Mine was burnt. 

I felt that my steak was done okay, it wasn't too chewy and it did have some flavour but to be honest I could have gone medium to rare in retrospect after tasting TDS's. Both of us felt that our steaks were a little salty which I can only assume was due to the garlic butter - I'd suggest asking for this to be missed off when ordering however this may make the steak too dry.... ? 

We decided to order dessert to get the full rounded experience. 

TDS went for the rice pudding. 

Aiming for comfort food TDS instead found a very rich creamy decadent take on a rice pudding. 

I decided to order the mango mess - if you haven't worked it out ready its like an  Eton Mess but with mango. Served in a sundae dish. 

The meringue was done well and I liked the creamy mango sauce draping it. The thing which let it down however was the mango - it just wasn't ripe. 

The restaurant was pretty quiet and towards the very end of the night I was pretty certain we were the only ones in there. 

The staff were pleasant and courteous, they didn't interrupt us at inconvenient moments and their customer service started off well. The impression that they were overly passionate about the food wasn't quite there, a lot of pre-prepared questions given to staff I feel.

Overall it is an okay meal, I'm not sure I could justify spending £75 on this meal however. 

Miller and Carter
The Light
58 The Headrow