Hot Spot: Bird of Smithfield

26 Smithfield Street, London EC1A 9LB, 020 7559 5100

The story
After more than 15 years heading the kitchen at The Ivy and Soho House Group, chef-proprietor Alan Bird set up Bird in the heart of Smithfield. Set over five floors of a Georgian house, this establishment feels like a private members club, with a buzzing restaurant, a lounge bar, private dining, a cool late cocktail basement bar and gorgeous rooftop to while away those summer evenings.   
The reality
It lives up to its billing. Small, personable, friendly, with a Country Living decor and laid-back vibe that makes Bird a place you will return to again and again. The classically modern British food draws from all four corners of our isles, including Cornish crab, Blythburgh pork belly and Brixham plaice, ideal for hearty and healthy diners alike.

The damage
For two people, two courses and wine comes to under £100. Great value in my book.

Signature dish
Alan’s Shepherd’s Pie, which became a signature dish at The Ivy.

Dining experience ****
The intimate dining room makes it ideal for a one-to-one client lunch. For a larger group, you’d be very well served in the private dining room. And you can also slip into a stylish evening at the basement Birdcage cocktail bar, with live DJs.

Chance of getting a last-minute booking ****
Not bad: to guarantee a table, you should book a few days in advance.
Client wow factor ****
It’s relaxed, friendly, high quality and a bit off the beaten track, but with all the hallmarks and influence you’d expect from a veteran of The Ivy and Soho House.
Overall ****
Bird of Smithfield is a cracking establishment, great for every kind of occasion from business breakfasts and client lunches to cocktails with colleagues, and quickly makes you feel like you’ve stumbled upon your own members’ club.

Reviewed by Rachel Friend, managing director, Weber Shandwick

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