This week saw us finally restarting the Quest after Franc’s lengthy absence. The Rivington Bar and Grill in Shoreditch is the location with Alice and Darren and Francoise, Sebastian and Claire making up the numbers.
Now people have been here before, Matthieu once went for dinner with a group of friends, four of which labelled their food as “inedible.” That is a good start.
Here is the sample menu. On a Sunday they offer a set menu, which I am a fan of, although their menu is for three courses. I prefer the option of choosing 2 courses for £x and 3 for £y. I do not want to have to choose both a starter and a dessert. Minus a quarter point for that.
And here is the actual menu for the day, which, on the face of it, doesn’t look too bad.
What others are saying
Disclaimer. The views hereafter are not representative of the Quest for a Sunday Roast or any member of the Quest team
Very Good 10/32
“We loved this place, really busy, great buzz, staff were great fun, so good at what they do, the buliding itself is beautiful. I couldnt recommend this place high enough.” www.tripadvisor.com “When we walked in there was no atmosphere which is how it was through most of the evening.The service was very slow and the staff wasn’t very attentive.There was about a 30 min wait between the 2 courses with no staff interaction during the interim. With the number of establishments, they need to try harder I’m afraid. Food was just ok. Spend your money somewhere else!” www.tripadvisor.com“Rivington Grill Shoreditch is well worth a visit. The theme is old fashioned British food and traditional ingredients, but well presented and in stylish but relaxed surroundings just off Shoreditch High Street. On my second visit I started with a rabbit, black pudding and egg salad which was very tasty, and followed that with a barnsley chop and bubble & squeak. There is a good wine list, with some wines available by the glass allowing a minor indulgence at lunchtime but still able to go back to work!”www.tripadvisor.com “Well prepared, quality, straightforward food. Busy evenings even the bar. Probably best full English breakfast and burgers in London. Let downs? Sometimes difficult to choose a dish as occasionally nothing stands out on the menu and service is frequently poor.” www.qype.co.uk “One of the best gastropubs in London. Good quality food, prepared simply. Nice staff, and good prices.”www.qype.co.uk “We really like this unpretentious bohemian style restaurant and have been eating here once a year on holiday trips last four years. Sadly it didnt deliver on our latest visit. The staff, though friendly and informal seems a bit whimsical in approach. Two ginmartinis ordered, two mojitos delivered – is just an example. Oysters were excellent, cornish crab average, but the strongly recommended steaks were a true and utter disaster: extremely tough and obviously wrongly butchered. The attempt they did to make it right produced two lumps of steak marginally more tender but covered in foul tasting oil as though they were deep fried (old trick?). No good tastes there at all. We were really surprised….Two stars for staff who seemed sincerely sorry for this. Shape up!” www.timeout.com
Hm. So essentially, much like a lot of London gastropubs it looks like the staff are pretty vacant and the food is hit and miss. We shall see.
I do not know there they get the idea that this is a “bar” and grill. The bar is nothing to speak of, with one beer on tap, a separate port menu they have to find from somewhere when asked, and the most vacant staff I have ever dealt with outside of the all-time worst Quest venue – the Sun in Splendor in Notting Hill.
Still it is pretty clean, white table cloths, nice lighting, overly oppressive music, bad art, weird lighting fixtures and a couple literally making out in the corner over their eggs benedict.
(From Left to Right, Whitebait – Darren, salt beef with green beans and samphire – Alice and Sebastian)
(From Left to Right – roast beef – Darren, king scallops – Francoise, fish and chips – Claire, sole – Alice, and Sebastian)
(from Left to Right – Ice Cream – Alice, Cheese – Francoise, apple crumble and custard – Sebastian, Claire, Rhubarb and Custard Jelly – Darren)
Thoughts and Observations (Collective and Individual)
- Fixed menu is relatively limited – better to go a la carte
- Brunch looked good
- Not a bar it should be called the Rivington Grill – Darren
- The ladies toilet is kind of an obstacle course – but the hand soap is awesome – Francoise
- Disinterested staff
- Too loud music
- Just bitburger on tap
- Terrible art
- Waiter did not take menus away – had to question if we were left with them as mats
- Whitebait are whole fish and full and plump not the dry version I had in Venice – Darren
- Claire, to Seb, how are the starters?
- Seb – good
- Claire – good? Good
- I thought that was reasonable but not great – Alice
- I would have preferred a carpaccio rather than salt beef – Seb
- Bread is good
- Chips are not double cooked, they are just overdone – claire
- Really delicate beef – not asked how I wanted it done – but good – Darren
- Yorkshire does not yield to the fork. – Darren
- Oily, could do with a bit more zest – Seb
- But it’s nice – Alice
- I have to say I am disappointed – Claire
- Mine is oily – franc
- Fish is nice, peas are nice, batter is really oily – Claire
- Chips were not good – Alice
- Beef and roasts combo was good – Darren
- Sole needed to be deboned
- Franc – on Alice’s samphire and fish – really good
- Claire left her chips.
- If I was scoring it would be 1 and a Half out of 5 – Seb
- If it were cheaper then I would tolerate it – Alice
- It is truly hit or miss – the beef and roast were good. The chips were terrible. Everything was greasy. Awful Yorkshire.
- Service sucks
- Claire -I need more wine to get through this experience!
- Worst service – but then saw our waiter left.
- Brunch looks good. Lunch sucked.
- Coffee comes with hot steam milk – thumbs up – Seb
- Too sweet. Bad choice – rhubarb and custard jelly – Darren
- Apple crumble and custard – Claire and Seb
- Cheese plate – franc
- Chocolate mint choc chip ice cream – Alice
- It’s nothing special – Claire
- Blah b-l-a-h Claire
- I have forgotten about it already – Seb
- My main was greasy – Alice
- Shoreditch – too cool for school – but no substance – Claire
- I would not come back here – Seb seconded by Claire, and Darren
- Expectation up here, actuals down here – Claire
- We were never told about the specials
- £200!! Bill
- £4!! For each bottle of water!! Is this a bad restaurant not a fucking hotel!
- We couldn’t even bring ourselves to pay the discretionary 12.5% gratuity as the service was shocking. We lost the waiter midway and he just went home, and was replaced by a girl who recognised the fact service there sucked balls.
I think the sum of all the parts adds up to the fact that the service really is bad, the food is average, and each dish had something wrong with it (the chips were bad, the Yorkshire would have been sent back at the worst pub in London, the fish was just bones, the Rhubarb this was awful), the selection was terrible and this “bar and grill” was neither. The grill options were limited, and the bar was non-existent.
Would any of us go back? Never! Would any of us recommend this venue to others? Never! We are only posting this to warn people off thinking the Rivington Bar and Grill. It is not trendy and hip Shoreditch. It is not fun. It is expensive!