Last weekend my husband and I dined at Marco Pierre White Steakhouse, Bar & Grill in Newcastle upon Tyne. Situated within Hotel Indigo on Fenkle Street, it is a stylish and modern grill restaurant and bar, with seating for about 100 people.
Having visited this restaurant on a number of occasions in the past and had lovely meals we decided to return having been given a £75 voucher from my husbands colleagues for a leaving present for him. We booked a table for two at 8.30 pm. We decided to go early and have a few drinks at the bar area before our meal. The drinks were very nice, I had a couple of Hendricks gin coolers. Pricey but a good cocktail! We had a browse of the menu before being seated and decided that we would have steaks for main course, as that is what they are known for being a steakhouse and grill. There was entertainment, in the form a singer which was very enjoyable to listen to whilst having a drink.
To start we ordered Wheeler’s Atlantic Prawn Cocktail (£9.95) and Warm Baked Camembert (£8.50). The starters arrived and the prawn cocktail was somewhat underwhelming. The prawns were not prawns, they looked like they were shrimps from Iceland or farmfoods. You expect when you pay £9.95 for a starter that you will receive a few king prawns at least and I cannot believe that the chef’s are happy plating them for diners. The camembert was beautiful, with a lovely relish and toasted sourdough bread. One gripe I do have is that no complimentary bread is now offered, a selection of breads were brought to you table previously when I have dined here. Making me feel that the restaurant has been told to cut costs, a bread basket can now be purchased for £3.75 which in a restaurant of this calibre is nothing more than a joke and profiteering.
Main course I had a Fillet steak (£31.95) and my partner the 16 oz T-bone steak (£31.95) we both ordered sauces, mushroom and peppercorn (£3.50 each) to accompany our steak. We could not fault the main courses and the steaks were mouthwateringly good, I would recommend to anyone. They came with grilled mini tomatoes on the vine, pomme frites and a side salad with a merlot dressing. We ordered wine to accompany the meal. I was however a little annoyed at the comment from the waiter upon ordering my meal that the chef wouldn’t be happy cooking my fillet steak well done “The chef is going to love you” he said. At £31.95 I feel the customer could ask for it burnt to a cinder and the waiter should simply smile and nod. Customer service skills could possibly need brushing up on!
My favourite part of any meal, the puddings. I will always make room for a dessert, so we ordered New York Baked Cheesecake with fresh strawberries (£6.95) The cheesecake arrived and it was merely a slither and inch wide, like a little sampler. You expect a slice of cheesecake at least and it was very disappointing indeed, nothing like new york cheesecake at all. However my choice of Classic Knickerbocker Glory with Chantilly cream (£6.75) was ‘win win’, as a child a holiday treat would always be a knickerbocker glory and it brought back all those lovely memories spoon by spoon. It was creamy, fruity and certainly hit the spot.
The bill arrived and all service charges were applied before the voucher was applied. We thought that it would have been fair to apply the voucher, work out what is owed then apply the service charge. A discretionary 10% service is added to your bill. Out of the £75.00 voucher, £14.00 was for service charge. The total bill was £143.00 and although I enjoyed my meal, I feel it was a meal of two halves. My husbands starter and pudding were not up to standard at all and it certainly left a bitter taste in our mouths about returning. Which is a shame as we have visited more than a handful of times in the past, I think that MPW Newcastle are now more interested in simply filling the restaurant to full capacity with their cheaper set menu deals, than offering a superb service and food to match! I cannot believe the man himself would be happy about this. It saddens me having to write negative feedback, as I try to seek the positive in everything, in this instance its justified. I will not be rushing back.