10 Greek Street
10 Greek Street, W1D 4DH
WLC Rank : 93
Glass from : £ 4.25 (125 ml)
BEST FORBalanced, nuanced, ingredient-focused dishes
The little black book
Homemade beer and excellent martinis
The meek Soho staple has a cheap, cheerful and very considered wine and beer list, supplemented by a little black book of aged and dazzling goodies.
Co-owner, Luke Wilson is always keen to rise to the challenge to satisfy guests seeking “anything new and interesting,” with sips of far-reaching finds including the Zivania brandy which recently promoted bar manager, George Symillides (formerly of Heist Bank) brought back from his native Cyprus. He also showcases an expanding range of lagers bottled at the Braybrooke Beer Co, Market Harborough which he is closely involved with. Brewed in a former grain drying store to what Wilson terms, “exacting German principles,” renditions may include Keller Lager, Session Lager, New Zealand Pils, a Cold Brew Coffee lager, and smoked lager, which he says works exceptionally well with food such as Herefordshire rib eye with cardoncelli mushrooms, kale and horseradish from the kitchen of 10 Greek Street’s co-owner and chef, Cameron Emirali.
Other dishes by Emirali (previously of The Wapping Project) may include lamb tartare and anchovy, then trout, blood orange, puntarelle, chilli and squid ink aioli, and the final icy kiss that is the pear sorbet and vodka.
A graduate in Biological Sciences, with previous hospitality roles including The Zetter and The Ambassador, as well as experience serving the City via importer, Liberty Wines, Wilson recently enjoyed a behind-the-scenes tour of Nyetimber during harvest, “and had an amazing lunch sitting in the vineyards!”
Wines must be delicious to earn a place on Wilson’s main list, with choices driven by purity of fruit and a sense of freshness. He also implores guests to ask to see his Little Black Book, where, neatly scribed in pencil along with the remaining tally of bottles, labels might include Liquid Farm, Four Chardonnay from Santa Rita Hills, Felsina, mature Fontalloro from Tuscany, and Clos des Papes Châteauneuf-du-Pape. “These wines are sourced from private cellars, auctions, and fine wine lists,” Wilson reveals.
When not at 10 Greek Street or boiling beer in Leicestershire, you may find Wilson on vinous reconnaissance at Albertine, Shepherds Bush. He is also contemplating a book about 10 Greek Street.
By Douglas Blyde.
Co-owner, Luke Wilson, a graduate in Biological Sciences, has been inextricably linked with restaurants for the past 12 years, with previous roles at The Zetter and The Ambassador. Prior to opening the Spartan of décor, but cosy of welcome, or functional but fun, 10 Greek Street, he worked for importer, Liberty Wines, looking after accounts throughout the City.
‘Our main list is concise and constantly evolving with a range of grapes, styles and regions,’ he says, modestly. ‘We try to make it as accessible as possible, with bottle prices ranging from £20 to £60.’ Wines must be delicious to earn a place on the list, he adds, with choices apparently driven by purity of fruit and a sense of freshness. By the glass, there are rich pickings, including a flute of Nyetimber for well below £10.
Guests should also ask to see the ‘little black book’ in this dining room, as well as at sister site, the Refectory at Whitechapel Gallery. Neatly scribed in pencil along with the remaining tally of bottles, this lists such treasures as the beautifully illustrated Liquid Farm Golden Slope Chardonnay, pre-2000 Haut-Brion, vibrant vintages of Tignanello and single-vineyard Ports. ‘These wines are sourced from private cellars, auctions, and fine wine lists,’ says Wilson.
Wilson recalls memorable winemaker dinners at 10 Greek Street, which has a characterful private room, including Barolo producer, GD Vajra (Piedmont) and Jeffrey Grosset from Clare Valley, Australia. ‘I remember listening with great interest to Jeffrey Grosset as he talked about screwcaps. As one of the original proponents of the closure, he made what might be considered a somewhat mundane subject quite fascinating!’
Built to be wine-friendly, dishes by co-owner and head chef, Cameron Emirali (previously of The Wapping Project), chalked on the blackboard, may include starter of whole quail with n’duja and lentils, followed by Barnsley chop, celeriac, sprouting broccoli and anchovy, or chateaubriand with duck fat potatoes, cavolo nero and horseradish, culminating in pudding of pear sorbet and Strega (indeed there are plentiful postprandial drinks to choose from).
Also look out for the Northamptonshire made, unfiltered and unpasteurised amber kellerbier lager, brewed by Wilson and Emirali – Braybrooke Beer Co.
By Douglas Blyde.