Foxlow is the new restaurant and bar from Hawksmoor masterminds Will Beckett and Huw Gott. Recently opened on St. John Street in Clerkenwell, it’s just a short walk from Farringdon tube station. Serving slow-smoked and charcoal grilled dishes alongside a menu of original cocktails, Foxlow is billed as a neighbourhood restaurant with warm, informal service and a relaxed atmosphere. Luckily that neighbourhood happened to be our own, so last week we paid Foxlow a visit.
Housed in a Grade II listed warehouse and featuring reclaimed 1950s oak flooring and old chemistry lab tops for tables, the interiors at Foxlow create a lived-in and authentic feel. As soon as we entered, the friendly staff showed us to our table (right in the corner, perfect for people watching) and we immediately felt at home. Foxlow was full and buzzing, and gave that local-pub feeling that you could have wandered up to any given table, sat down and struck up a conversation with your fellow diners (more on that later).
We had heard a lot of great things about the short but accomplished list of cocktails on offer at Foxlow and eased our way in with the Tom Ford; gin, Benedictine, lemon & soda and the Sanlucar Fizz; Manzanilla, Poire William and Prosecco. The Sancular Fizz had to be the highlight; the dry Manzanilla sherry mixed perfectly with the fizzy Prosecco, all brought together with the fruity, fragrant Poire William. Also catching our eye on the menu was the Snowgroni; Dubonnet, cherry & grapefruit and the Miami Dolphin; rum, lime, strawberry and Pina Colada.
Starters on the Foxlow menu include a range of simple, unpretentious dishes with a focus on great ingredients. We shared the Crispy Five Pepper Squid; fried squid rings in light crunchy batter served with a touch of chilli & coriander and Iberico Ribs, melt in the mouth pork (excuse the cliché, but they really were) coated in a rich, sticky sauce.
Main courses are divided into ‘Slow-smoked’ and ‘Charcoal Grilled & Roasted’ sections and feature ethically sourced meat, supplied by The Ginger Pig of Borough Market. Eight Hour Bacon Rib with Maple & Chilli and Ten Hour Beef Shortrib with Kimchi sounded delicious but the temptation for steaks was too much (there’s a choice of two; Rib Fillet and Deckle). I opted for the Rib Fillet with peppercorn source, along with a side of skin on fries sprinkled with bacon salt. The steak was cooked perfectly, and the sauce, if a little on the thin side, was flavoursome and fiery. There are also fish dishes and vegetarian options on offer, such as Monkfish with Chermoula and Spiced Aubergine, but meat reigns supreme at Foxlow.
The wine list includes guest selections which change every month, with many available by the glass. On the recommendation of Thomas our waiter (deserving of a name check), we shared a bottle of Domaine de Cébène’s Faugères Les Bancèls red wine (also name-check worthy), which was fresh and smooth with a hint of acidity; the perfect match for our steaks. If the cocktails hadn’t done it, Dry January was now well and truly over.
To finish off, we went for the Chocolate Popcorn Sundae and Peanut Butter & Jelly Sundae, two of five soft serve sundaes on offer. Our faces clearly said it all, as mid dessert the diners next to us leant over to ask what we were having. After recommending our chosen desserts and anticipating food envy at the thought of two more sundaes arriving within arm’s reach, we left Foxlow feeling full and content. With Foxlow as our new neighbourhood restaurant, we decided we wouldn’t be relocating for a while.
69-73 St. John Street
Telephone: 020 7014 8070
Opening times: Monday to Saturday 12pm to 12am, Sunday 12 – 6.30pm
Lunch: Monday to Saturday 12-3pm, Sunday 12-5.30pm
Dinner: Monday to Saturday 5.30pm-10.30pm