Sat 10th October 2015
I’ve been visiting Big Easy for a long time, ever since I moved to London so many years ago, but always the Chelsea branch. I do like lobsters and Big Easy on King’s Road became my go-to place whenever I fancied somewhere affordable, where I could devouring a lobster and enjoying a nice cocktail or two. This has become a long-lasting tradition of mine, way before the day when the first Burger & Lobster restaurant opened in London’s Mayfair (in December 2011) and soon started multiplying and taking over the London lobster scene.
Big Easy Covent Garden opened its doors in March 2014, so it’s not brand new, but is still extremely popular and booking is highly recommended to avoid disappointment, despite it’s 300 covers at any time. (At least they accept reservations, which is a lot better than so many other trendy restaurants in central London these days.) Once you have walked through the long tunnel from the main entrance, the restaurant suddenly opens up. The place is big, and ticks all the boxes for a good American eatery—metal cages, wooden blocks, low-hanging light shades, dark ambient lighting… It has quite an industrial feel, rightfully making homage to its past—the venue was previously the original home of the Charing Cross & Strand Electricity Supply Corporation. I cannot fault the decor of Big Easy Covent Garden—after all, interior here was all designed by Macaulay Sinclair, who are responsible for the fantastic interiors at Hawksmoor.
We have booked a table weeks in advance. Still, we were refused to be shown to a table until the whole table have arrived (our friends were running a few minutes late)—yes, they are popular, and they know it. (Some may get put off by this and consider this bad service, but our service during our meal was attentive and friendly.) What to do during the wait? Get a drink from the bar (if you are lucky enough to battle through the crowd on a Saturday night to get served), and they have quite a collection—a big booklet of whiskeys, ales and wines, and a big selection of liquors to make your cocktail-of-choice. You can pretty much order whatever you can think of!
What about the food here? Pit-cooked fresh BBQ, reams of seasonal seafood and the fresh lobsters, sourced from Nova Scotia, or prime dry aged fee steaks. Your choice. My default order here is the Lobster Fest (whole fresh lobster / lobster roll / whole lobster mac & cheese, served with fries, house salad and a free slushie cocktail or schooner of ice-cold craft lager or ale) for £20, which is quite a bargain.
To finish, choose from a selection of desserts, all served with vanilla ice cream, at £5.90 apiece. Alternative, enjoy a dessert cocktail, such as a classic espresso martini (£9.50).
Should you go to Big Easy (Covent Garden)? Yes if you are looking for somewhere central for casual dining, with great atmosphere. Remember to book in advance though. However, if you are after somewhere more intimate for a quite night out, then it won’t be right for you.
Cost: allow £25 and under
Address: 12 Maiden Ln, London WC2E 7NA
Phone: 020 3728 4888