LONDON | There’s spoiling yourself and then there’s borderline sinful gluttony. Guess which one we went for when dining at the Covent Garden branch of Big Easy? With three branches across London (Covent Garden, Canary Wharf and Kings Road), Big Easy Bar.B.Q & Lobstershack have solidified their reputation as one London’s most popular spots for hearty American BBQ and comfort food. Think mammoth seafood and lobster dishes, mouth-watering margaritas, meatier than meaty plates and the messiest burgers.
The Covent Garden branch is split into two floors starting with a tunnel entrance that guides guests into a big shack with lots of wooden panelling and graffiti adorned walls. Both floors are moody, softly lit, with a masculine touch. On the ground floor, diners are treated to some good ol’ Country blues from a guitarist and singer, adding to the Southern American theme.
The menu is larger than life with a distinctly American Southern accent. There’s the usual American BBQ staples but with a Big Easy twist, such as Popcorn Shrimp, Meat and Seafood platters, Voodoo Chicken Wings, 6hr cooked Dry-Rubbed St.Louis Pork Ribs, their famous Nova Scotia Lobster and Lobster rolls to Steaks and over-the-top Burgers… drooling yet?
Ahead of the starters, we were given a plastic bib, which our ever so helpful and chirpy waitress recommended and rightly so – judging from the plates on the table next to us, things were about to get messy. The gluttonous Grand Appetizer Platter arrived at our table, the large circular tray decorated with glossy chunks of Bar.B.Q Chopped Rib Tips, Voodoo Chicken Wings, Pit-Smoked Bar.B.Q wings, Tenders Hush Puppies (deep fried balls of corn meal) Calamari and Deep Fried Jumbo Shrimp with a selection of tangy, creamy and hot dips. The calamari and shrimp were the stars of this platter, oversized, perfectly crisp and juicy. Smothered in seasoned Bar.B.Q sauce, the ribs and wings made for a pleasant bite, but lacked that essential kick of flavour.
Then, there were the mains. 1.5lb of Lobster served with chunky cuts of fries and a house salad. We also opted for the Taste-O-Rama! – Pit-Smoked Bar.B.Q Chicken, Dry-Rubbed St Louis Pork Ribs and Carolina Pulled Pork. Aesthetically, both dishes were made for Instagram and hashtag food goals. Taste wise, not so much. The Lobster, while fresh, was a struggle to eat with minuscule lobster meat to pick from. The chicken in the Taste-O-Rama! dish was virtually taste-free and on the dry side, but the ribs and pulled pork kicked butt!
This was all washed down with 2 glasses of Shirley Temple from their enviable drinks menu. As for dessert, well, we didn’t quite make it that far, but I’d like to know if anybody has.
The verdict? In terms of the ever growing American BBQ and Southern Comfort Food trend which continues to spread across London, Big Easy isn’t quite up there with our favourites, but we’re far from singing the blues. Order the right dishes, and you’ll enjoy a great, fun meal.
14 Maiden Lane
London WC2E 7NA
Mon – Thu: 12:00pm to 11:00pm
Fri: 12:00pm to 11:30pm
Sat: 11:00am to 11:30pm
Sun: 12:00pm to 10:30pm