I’m not particularly sure why it’s taken me this long to write a restaurant review, given the amount of times I’ve eaten out and not to mention my love of all things food related. Nevertheless, there’s no better time to start like the present. So here goes, my debut review. Let me mention this is by no means as great as those reviews you’ll find on food blogs, magazines, newspapers etc – just a recount of my dining experience!
I hadn’t heard about Smoking Goat until I was skimming through TripAdvisor (my trusty source for eateries) and came across a newish restaurant in Covent Garden. Thai barbecue sounded interesting and judging by the good reviews, it was worth a try.
The restaurant was packed on arrival and we were given an option to join an online queue. My details were taken down and I was told to return in aprox. 20 minutes. I was pleasantly surprised to receive a text within ten minutes informing me my table was ready. Under promised and over delivered- loves it!
We were squeezed onto a table between other diners – literally elbow to elbow. If you value your personal space, then maybe not one for you! Took a look at the minimal menu options and were persuaded by our friendly and informative waiter to go for their signature dish smoked goat shoulder for two with Thai herbs (£34). Just for added measure, we made sure to order the unlimited sticky rice for £1 per person. The waiter did warn us we wouldn’t need to order anything else because the portion would be more than enough, however, I couldn’t resist ordering one of my favourites – scallop!
The scallops at £3.75 a pop, were perfectly cooked, slightly seared left it soft and delicate on the inside and smothered in a tangy sauce with a hint of chilli which gave it a nice kick. The goat closely followed and when they say for two – they mean it! I was pleased by the portion size and the presentation was also inviting. A whole joint was placed on a plate drizzled in a thin sauce and garnished with mint, chilli and morning glory (leafy green veg).
Wasting no time at all, I dug straight in. As this was my first time trying goat, I didn’t really know what to expect. The meat was not as tender as I imagined it would be and slightly lacking in taste. Although combined with the different elements on the dish brought it together, the sauce was rather thin and not bursting with flavour. More than half way through, the meat to garnish ratio was clearly out of balance, leaving a seemingly bland tasting dish in my opinion. It could very well be that by this point I was already full and just eating for the sake of finishing the dish but even under those circumstances, I could usually finish off a plate when something tastes good! Not a bad meal overall…it definitely touched the sides alright but there was something missing.
The highlight for me would definitely be the scallops but it’s a real shame it didn’t end on a high with their signature dish. If you’re feeling adventurous then this cafe style-bar is worth a visit with many other dishes outside of the goat to consume.
If you value your personal space when dining out then best to avoid. Don’t think I’ll be in a rush to head back anytime soon!
Till next time…Outskies!