It was an exceptionally cold night when I visited the Scottish Steak Club.
It was one of those evenings that, come five o’clock, there’s a huge temptation to throw some processed food in the microwave and cuddle up in front of the telly.
However, this restaurant boasts the “finest Scottish steak cooked in our specialised Josper grill” and, after one mouthful of my medium-well done fillet, I knew I’d return in a minute come lashing rain coupled with sub-zero
temperatures and a threat of hail.
Still relatively new, it is linked to the Inchyra Hotel and is very much a warm, welcoming place, busy with customers and polite, helpful staff.
I know a few people who employ a certain snobbery about eating in a hotel chain, although latterly and rightly I think the belief that the food and ingredients wouldn’t be the highest is slipping away.
But for those who still hold this view - I’d invite them to the Scottish Steak Club.
It’s a little a bit different from what you’d expect; I loved the chunky picture frames on the wall with photos of some cheery cattle and the semi-circle bar in the middle of the eaterie.
The menu kicks off with a sort of mission statement, telling diners that the club’s chefs only work from “whole raw ingredients using only the finest and freshest produce” resulting in beautiful dishes.
The sharing platters selection includes an ambitious butchers board with pastrami beef, potted parfait, smoked venison, and piccalilli.
I enjoyed the smoked salmon sprinkled with lemon juice and served with bread, while my dining companions were thrilled with a hearty bowl of soup served in a small cauldron which kept it comfortingly hot.
Afterwards, of course, we all chose the main event.
Leaving aside the restaurant’s name, the knifes on the table are large and sturdy, telling diners in a subtle way that the steak here means business.
And it is instantly excellent.
The combination of tenderness, flavour and traditional garnishing make the steak delicious, juicy and memorable.
Served with handcut chips, sauce in cute gravy boat, a large mushroom and a wedge of beef tomato, it was a real treat on a pretty much perfect plate.
It’s almost impossible not to eat every single crumb.
My table was absolutely thrilled with the meal, and the service available.
Waiting staff couldn’t have been more pleasant and helpful, and were attentive at every turn.
My eavesdropping hobby also came in handy, and I could hear people at nearby tables praising their dishes with their fellow diners.
It was clear it was very much a happy restaurant, catering that night, as it did, for couples, groups of friends and families, and birthday celebrations.
Some of the restaurant’s prices are a slight downside; the main dishes are quite
expensive and I found £3.25 for a side of seasonal greens of
brocolli and beans a bit too much.
And, while offering an excellent wine selection, you’ll get little change from £20 for any of the bottles with most priced above that.
However, I wouldn’t think twice about returning, confident that I would never be disappointed in the quality of the food and the welcome that awaits.
Inchyra Grange Hotel, Grange Road, Polmont