Monday, 29 September 2014

Miller and Carter: For the Love of Steak

Many months ago, Miller & Carter announced it was opening its doors in Newcastle and I've literally been bursting to get myself in there ever since.  It's definitely been the most anticipated dinner of my life.

So when the restaurant announced a series of events to celebrate their opening, it seemed only fitting that I should move myself in and make the brand new Mosley Street restaurant my home for the week.


Miller & Carter's debut week in Newcastle began with a series of soft launch dinners with the restaurant's most excited fans invited to book tables with the promise of 50% off food.  To prove my enthusiasm it seems I booked the very first table and so when I bounded through the door at 6:00 pm on Tuesday, not only did I find myself at the top of the booking list but also found myself gate crashing a team meeting.  Sorry guys!

Now for a Geordie history lesson.  Miller & Carter's new home once belonged to Ant and Dec.  The famous duo opened up a bar at the premises called the Lodge 11 years ago.  Being new to Newcastle I'd never actually been to the Lodge but I hear it became a bit of a popular place to down a few beers before heading off to the clubs - think sticky floors, aging interior and a shabby DJ booth.

One thing I can tell you is that the place looks amazing now.  As soon as I walked through the huge doors I was in awe of the grandness of the entrance.  The restaurant is furnished in dark wood, deep reds, gorgeous tartan and the centre piece is a rather lovely staircase taking you upstairs to a smaller cosier eating area.


I was very lucky and got my own little private tour with the restaurant's manager Rob who proudly showed me Miller & Carter's trademark giant bull which watches over the door and explained some of the changes that have been made to the building.


Simon and I were shown to a booth at the back of the restaurant.  We were seriously impressed by how huge the space is.  The restaurant began to fill up pretty quickly but we never felt overcrowded and had plenty of room to enjoy our experience.

It took us forever to decide what food to choose.   The menu was so full of amazing sounding dishes that I changed my mind quite a few times.  Luckily the waiters at Miller & Carter are all huge steak geeks and so are more than happy to chat through their favourite dishes and provide recommendations. 


There were two things on the menu that  I really wanted to try so lucky for me Simon decided to order my second choice so I could try both.  He went for the Fillet Wellington, steak topped with pate and mushrooms and then wrapped in puff pastry.  Wow! Where to begin!  It may well be the most amazing thing I have ever tasted .... gorgeous, juicy meat covered in perfect pastry.   Heaven!   


I admit I ate quite a lot of the food off his plate and didn't even apologise for it.  I just couldn't help myself.


I decided to order the rump 8oz steak.  For some reason that night I had a very strong craving for mac and cheese so had that as a side dish to my meal.  What a combination!


I did feel a little greedy, like I had two meals on the go but I wouldn't have had it any other way.   I ordered my steak medium and it was served just as I asked.  My knife slid effortlessly through my steak and, with no apologies for using such a cliché, the meat literally melted in my mouth.


All of the steak dishes come served with parsley butter, a slice of onion loaf and a lettuce wedge which comes with a choice of dressings.  

When it comes to delicious flavours Miller & Carter really prove their worth with an amazing assortment of wedge dressings (the cheesy ones are my favourites) and steak sauces.  I have to mention the British Beef dripping sauce that Simon chose, it was like a pot of really gorgeous thick gravy. 


Now after all of that food we were fairly stuffed however I would never want to let down my readers so we ploughed on with dessert (the things I do for you guys eh?!).  In all honesty our eyes never made it down the menu too far as the first two treats listed were our favourites.   Sticky Toffee Pudding for Simon and Bannaoffee Pie for me.


My pie could only be described as epic.   The toffee that was sitting on top of the base was so thick it almost glued my mouth shut (believe me this is a good thing!) and the caramelised bananas sitting on top of the generous slathering of cream were just perfect.


We both thoroughly enjoyed our meals and have bumped Miller & Carter up to the top with our favourite restaurants in the Toon.  We will most definitely be returning.

.... and I'm not lying when I say that as I was back through the doors only two days later with my blogging pal Chloe for a Press Lunch.

This time however I was getting a little behind the scenes glimpse and would be working for my food.  Assisted by Chef, Chris Stevenson, we all donned our special hats and aprons and filed into the kitchen to cook our own steaks.


Hearing more about how the steaks at Miller & Carter are sourced and prepared was fascinating.  Believe me, the beef being served is the finest - the restaurant know exactly where the meat has come from and are very particular in how they store and serve it to ensure when it appears on your plate, it is the very best.

It was so great to learn more about the journey from Farm to plate and I had no idea how much work goes into creating the perfect cut of meat.  Miller & Carter want to make sure they get everything just right, so the team enter into Steak School to learn about the process of serving the perfect steak.  This means that everyone has a great knowledge - when you pop in for a meal don't be shy to ask any questions you may have about your meal.  These guys really do know their stuff!


The challenge with cooking a great steak is to get a perfect diamond effect which Chris taught us how to make.   Then we each got a go at placing our meat onto the grill, flipping between a 2 o'clock and 10:00 o'clock angle.   I don't think our efforts were too bad!


Of course we are a bunch of amateurs so after each having a little go we moved into the restaurant for some wine so that Chris could finish our meat off and prepare us some food.

We were given a fantastic selection of food to share - four different lettuce wedges, sweet potato fries and of course lots and lots of steak served with all of the toppings.  



I had a lovely time eating delicious food and chatting with Chloe, Eve and Sarah Jayne and before we knew it, it was time to get up and leave.

Having spent so much of last week in Miller & Carter I will admit I am already missing the nice big juicy steaks.  Anyone else thinking I need to book myself a table?

15 comments:

  1. I love M&C! My favourite one is in Essex which is on an actual boat! Such a good atmosphere and experience! Love that you got to cook your own!!

    Lou ~ whiskyandpancakes.co.uk

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    1. I'd never ever been to one before, I'd definitely be interested to try out some more now though ... will keep my eyes open!

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  2. Ooooh that Wellington! Just heaven on a plate! What a great experience getting in the kitchen too :)

    Cx
    www.cocktailsandcaroline.com

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    1. It was fantastic ... I don't know how those guys do it though, it's so hot and such a tiny space!

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  3. I love the décor of that restaurant - the food looks absolutely amazing too.

    Lizzie's Daily Blog

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    1. It is gorgeous, it made me want to smoke a cigar .. which is odd cos I've never smoked a cigar in my life!

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  4. Steak is an absolute favourite if it is cooked well. I love Goucho in London mainly because it is consistently good. But the best steak I have had was up the CN Tower. This restaurant looks wonderful the design inside is lovely. Great that you got to see behind the scenes and then get to eat what looks like delicious food. The steaks and desserts look wonderful Lucy x

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    1. Ooooooooooh, I'll make a note of that :)

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  5. my mouth is completely watering at the sight of those steaks!

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    1. Mine too .. I have serious withdrawals!

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  6. Wow looks amazing! Can't wait to try this. & the banoffee pie!! 😍

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    1. Definitely leave room for dessert ... it was a struggle but we managed it :D

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  7. What a gorgeous looking restaurant, I love steak and my mouth is now watering even though I've already eaten (quite common when I read your posts haha) thank you for managing to fit in the dessert just for us readers ;) looks like it was really worth it, that Bannaoffe pie looks solo good!

    Belle x Part of Belle's world

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  8. Chris would love it here, definitely have to try it soon! xx

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