We really enjoyed our visit to the original Big Easy in Chelsea so when I heard they were opening one in Covent Garden (opposite Rules), I was moist with anticipation. The new place has got the same ethos; lobsters, pulled pork, ribs and so on but they’ve brought in a new chef (a chap from America) to take things up a gear.
It’s a seriously big restaurant; I’m talking humungous. And that’s not the half of it; you’ll need some hiking boots and a bar of Kendal Mint Cake with you for the walk to the gents – it’s quite literally miles away. We were seated downstairs near the band which was the better of the two rooms in my opinion, however they only played for ten minutes or so then left which seemed a tad pointless. It was really loud too – perfect for the group of us for my friend’s birthday but I wouldn’t come here for a romantic dinner.
The menu was as vast as the restaurant so to keep things simple, we all shared the ‘Lobster Fest’ (Â£20) and ‘Bar.B.Q Blow Out’ (Â£15.95 per person). The lobster was really good, not quite as fresh tasting as Burger and Lobster but there was plenty of meat and it was all cooked well. I could have done with a lobster fork though! The chips were thick cut, I usually prefer fries myself but here they soaked up the accompanying garlic butter perfectly. Included in the price was a Slushie cocktail or pint of beer which made it even better value.
The meat was ruddy good too; it was the perfect ‘drunk food’. Bibs were provided and although I find that kind of thing a bit naff, they were totally needed as things got seriously messy. The chicken was moist and not drenched in a sickly sweet sauce which is often the case and the pulled pork was every bit flavourful. It hadn’t been fully shredded meaning it had texture which was nice. Talking of texture, the ribs were a real highlight. The meat wasn’t soggy or fatty, it was firm yet beautifully tender – you really have to try them.
Not in keeping with the rest of the meal were desserts, which were horrendous. The baked cheesecake and chocolate fudge cake (Â£5.30 each) which aren’t made on site, had all the charm and quality of an Asda own brand cake. Ridiculously sweet, dry, bland and also far too big – if it wasn’t for my pig of a friend, they would have remained uneaten.
Puds aside, the meat at Big Easy was really impressive – but what’s even more so is that such a gigantic restaurant can serve such tasty food and also do it with a smile. Service was really enthusiastic and friendly but most importantly in control, which added to the fun and lively atmosphere. But I think it’s time they hired a pastry chef.