Grain Store, King’s Cross

Vietnamese style salad, seatrout and squid à la plancha, Grain Store, King's Cross, London

Vietnamese style salad, seatrout and squid à la plancha (£16)

This huge, bright converted warehouse-y restaurant doesn’t appear to house any grain, but what it does have in store for you is vegetable-focused modern dishes which err on the side of ‘intriguing’ rather than ‘tempting’. These are not the sort of concoctions you could put together at home with a little extra effort; most involve an ingredient so niche that even Whole Foods’ staff would be challenged. Which makes them all the more covetable, though in my opinion the effort that’s gone into making the food at Grain Store exciting has compromised the effort that went into making it moreish.

Wood pigeon and cabbage salad, Grain Store, King's Cross, London

Fermented red cabbage, tea soaked golden grapes, truffle dressing, wood pigeon (£15.50)

Everything we tried was clearly put together with some serious culinary skill. My wood pigeon was rare as could be and retained all its tenderness while still crisp and meaty at its edges, and the tangy fermented cabbage salad bed that it sat on had bite but no resistance. Half of the plate of food was truly delicious: the first half. But as I got midway the exotic bits got banal and I started to wish I’d persuaded someone to share. In fact – and I can’t believe I’m saying this – this menu would really suit the dreaded small plates set-up.

Goji berries & carrot cake, Grain Store, King's Cross, London

Goji berries & carrot cake, chamomile [sic] ice cream (£6)

For innovation it can’t be beat, and you’ve got to admire a menu that you won’t find anywhere else, but great food isn’t enough to make a great lunch. The service was not as admirable, unfortunately, and our Sunday outing was frequently punctured by having to stare down any of the many staff milling around to ask for things we required. At these prices there are countless more charming places to eat, so it might be better to go against the Grain.

Grain Store
★★★✰✰   £££
Granary Square, 1-3 Stable St, Kings Cross, N1C 4AB, 020 7324 4466


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