13 April 2018
The Ned is a former Midlands Bank turned luxurious members club, dining emporium, spa and social hotspot in the City opened by the Soho House Group in 2017. While this gargantuan space may no longer be a bank, enough money exchanges hands between its grand African verdite columns to make any manager’s eyes water.
At the back of The Ned lies Lutyens Grill, a previously members’ only restaurant that is now open to the public. It is so-called after Edwin “Ned” Lutyens, the great architect who designed the momentous building in 1924. The wood-panelled dining room was originally the bank manager’s office and many of the restaurant’s City-dwelling diners remember visiting the original space.
Crossing the threshold of The Ned’s bustling lobby into the intimate clubby confines of Lutyens is like stepping back in time, to a decade where waiters wore white jackets and champagne was served in Art Deco crystal. Oak panelling is softened by Persian rugs, comfy green chesterfields and ‘Cardinal Hat’ tasselled lights, an Edwin Lutyens signature.
The menu starts with seared scallops and steak tartare, followed by salads, shellfish and lobster. As the name suggests however, this restaurant excels in steaks, from juicy cuts of British sirloin, rump and rib-eye to a whopping 1KG T-Bone or tomahawk for two, and luxurious Japanese wagyu. Monday through Friday, there is also a theatrical carving trolley that offers a daily roast at a reasonable price, including pork, beef Wellington and salmon en croûte.
It may have dropped its members-only status, but Lutyens still has a sophisticated, clandestine air, while pin-sharp staff are warm and attentive. Whether heading here for a business lunch or an evening date, it serves big flavour and old-school glamour, with inimitable Soho House savoir-faire.
Dine at Lutyens and then mingle among the many bars that make up The Ned’s buzzing ground-floor lobby, accompanied by nightly live music. A City clientele makes up the crowd during the week, while it fills up with a stylish, millennial set at the weekends.
27 Poultry, London EC2R 8AJ, thened.com