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Hix Oyster & Chop House
36-37 greenhill, rents, Cowcross Street, London EC1M 6BN
- Farringdon Station (<0.1 km)
- Barbican Tube Station (0.5 km)
- City Thameslink Station (0.7 km)
- Contact us:
020 7017 1930
4 reviews of Hix Oyster & Chop House in English
This is one lovely restaurant. Light and open and airy it really welcomes you in off the street. Multi layered areas split the bar from the prep from the tables.
We had tickets for the Barbican so went for the pre theatre menu, which at £15,95 for 2 courses has to be one of the best bargains in London, certianly round this part of it!
Brick coloured fish soup had an extraordinary depth of flavour, great crusty bread to guarantee you can mop up the dregs. Lovely meaty slice of ham hock terrine with an acid yellow slick of perfect piccalilli. Mains were a substantial lamb fillet salad and fish fingers with the previously mentioned perfect mushy peas.
Service is laid back - and I liked that.
Definitely going back for the full menu.
Great place, and a bit more fun than the newer Hix restaurant. Don't go if you want super-fast annoying service. This place has great cocktails and excellent food, and each time I've been there I've not been disappointed.
Service at Hix can come across as a bit too relaxed but ultimately proves competent and quick. The dining area's atmosphere has a wonderful simplicity (not as sterile as nearby St John or as chummy as the almost adjacent Smith of Smithfield - and if you can get here before/after the crowds - the quietude is wonderful). There's a delectable menu to peruse as well. I wouldn't blame anybody for opting for a chop of cow when visiting Hix. But if you can resist the mega-cuts, you might just find yourself pleasantly surprised!
Last time I was there, I had the coley fish fingers with mushy peas. Coley is a flavoursome meaty fish and, I reckon, the ideal fish for making fish fingers (or at least that's the conclusion I came too after having Mark Hix's version) especially when served atop a bed of the best mushy peas you've ever tasted. Yes, the mushy peas at Hix Oyster & Chops are the perfect representative for this age old British side dish. They're just mushy enough and appear to have been made with real peas (not some hideous neon green pap from a can). The taste of minty seasoning is pleasantly evident without masking the robust flavour of the peas. On this same visit, the fellow at the table next to mine exclaimed to his waiter that he'd just had the “best applesauce I've ever eaten!”. Wow. How good can applesauce be? Hmmm … I guess I'll just have to go taste for myself.
Mark Hix is delivering the goods. He has been criticised in the press for being too matey with his chums and not focusing on his customers, but I got sterling service and total attention. The most impressive element in the whole experience is the confidence in the quality of the ingredients, and their simple, unadorned presentation. The starter of salmon was so incredibly perfect in level of smokiness, texture and intensity of flavour that there was absolutely no need to service it with a garnish - no dill, no lemon, no nothing. Just a few supremely elegant slices. But the business is steak of course, and the porterhouse matched all expectations: excellent roasted, toasty flavour on the outside, good marbling and irresistibly bovine fat, luxuriously rich in flavour, supple and tender, and cut in pieces just the right size, outward from the bone.
We had a decent Priorat (Les Terrasses 2006) which - my only complaint - was way too warm, maybe 21 degrees - but they were happy to chill it for us to get the requisite 15-15 degrees. Maybe the wine glasses could be better quality given the level of some of the wines available.
Great atmosphere - buzzing but not frenzied or deafening, and lovely, utilitarian wood and ceramic interior.
They offer a superb range of native oysters which on this occasion I did not try. But I will next time.
All in all an excellent restaurant which I shall certainly be revisiting to satisfy that steak craving that never goes away. More cost-effective than going to Brooklyn just for Peter Luger, if not as exotic or extravagant.
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