Culinary Digest: JW Steakhouse, Mayfair, London

JW Steakhouse, I feel the need to warn before you read any further, is the kind of place you go to to break a long fast. Or seriously derail your food-shy diet. Or just the place to go to if you have been seriously ill and haven’t been able to eat for quite a while. Why? The portions are huge. I’m talking American-style huge.

This is not so strange if you consider the fact it’s situated within the Grosvenor House Hotel, which is part of the American JW Marriott Hotels and Resorts group. My feeding frenzy starts with the house’s Parker house rolls:

Feather-light, buttery things which used to be a staple of The Parker House, a 19th century hotel in Boston which is credited with creating the first Boston Cream Pie. I unfortunately (it could not be helped – the rolls are served warm! With butter!) indulge in a bit too many of the rolls because when my starter of tuna tartar comes, I realize just that alone will be enough to make me full.

It’s amazing. I would tell you more but I’ll let the picture speak for itself because the star attraction of this restaurant’s menu is impatiently waiting behind the curtains. Say hello to the aptly-named JW Tomahawk, the largest rib-eye steak one will (hopefully) ever have to tackle :

Not to be taken lightly. When it arrives, the 1kg monstrosity ignites a myriad of various evolutionary-honed responses. There’s the initial excitement of seeing a novelty — I’ve previously only ever seen food of such proportions on the small screen. Then fear and trepidation set in. How in the world does one begin tackling it? The fact it comes in a wrought-iron pan does not help things one bit, though,  I can’t imagine there are plates big enough to serve this slab of meat on.  Before long I start regarding the foot-long swoop of bone protruding upwards and outwards towards me with suspicion and finally, a sense of defensiveness sets it. I mean who in the world serves a person enough meat to feed a family of four?

I take a bite of the imposing steak and immediately feel utterly defeated. I will not even be able to get a quarter way through it. Thankfully, the Americans also made the use of doggy bags popular so the struggle will continue over a few days on my home turf.

My partner, who ploughed through his relatively normal-sized New York Strip quickly and victoriously, ordered the JW Steakhouse cheesecake:

A sweet conclusion to what, all considered, is a great but challenging Sunday evening out.

JW Steakhouse is located right across Hyde Park in London’s Mayfair area. It is within walking distance of Marble Arch, Oxford Street and Piccadilly Circs. Three-course meals start at £31.


  1. hahaha this is so funny to read as an American. If you are ever on our side of the “pond” and happen to be somewhere in the south, I think you are going to have a liver breakdown, a heart attack, and kidney failure all at once when you see the portion sizes there!


  2. Cynthia Wamwayi says:

    I can imagine! I still want to visit the American South though. Some day, some day. *sigh*


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