In July, as a graduation treat, my family and I visited Chop Bar and Grill within Sandman Hotel, where I have had the pleasure to stay at previously with Blair (my review can be read here), to eat the celebratory evening away. Located on the corner of St Andrew Street and Charlotte Street, Chop is perfect for spending a relaxing evening after a busy day of shopping.
I had never eaten at Chop Bar and Grill before, only chilled at the bar for an hour or two during a night out, so I was looking forward to exploring the menu and tasting some, hopefully, delicious food.
The restaurant, filled with walls of cobalt blue décor and wooden accents, portrays a contemporary feel. Orange stools and copper details throughout the restaurant provide a striking contrast again the deep blue that equates modern, yet regal with the colour scheme, giving off a premium casual atmosphere. With Scottish touches like their ‘Gie’s a Bosie’ sign, the eatery knows how to make us feel at home, or to those who are visiting from elsewhere, give them a sense of their present location in Bonnie Aberdeen.
With ample booth tables, Chop offers that personal space away from others within the popular restaurant to help you forget that you are surrounded by other customers to make for an increased dining experience.
Of course, if you aren’t in for a meal and just want drinks instead, the welcoming bar awaits, with the same current atmosphere and colour scheme, marble bar and a multitude of television screens, makes Chop a brilliant central location to catch up with friends and colleagues.
With a Rock Rose gin and Fever-Tree tonic in hand, I browsed the starter menu. With options such as Steak Bites (tender marinated bites of rump steak with whisky horseradish aioli and sweet Dijon dip) and Chilli Garlic Prawns (prawns sautéed in chilli and garlic butter with toasted, garlic ciabatta), you are in for a mouth-watering feast.
I say I browsed the menu but really, I spotted the Mini Mac Sliders and knew instantly that they were the starter for me. A portion of 3 mini beef burgers with pickled relish, American cheese, dill pickles and onions served on seeded buns, were delightful.
These melt-in-your-mouth, larger than ‘mini’ burgers taste just like McDonald’s Big Macs, much to my delight – a self-confessed McDonald’s addict (I did work there for 6 years okay, I’m McLoyal). Honestly, I could not get enough. I could have sat and eaten a whole tray of these burger sliders quite happily. I’m surprised I haven’t been back yet to eat more. If you are a Big Mac fan, then this is the starter for you. Warning though, it is filling starter; I struggled to eat even half of my main course after these bad boys.
The Main Course
Speaking of the main course, Chop Bar and Grill also have a gorgeous selection of warming dishes to tickle your taste buds, like Chipotle Mango Chicken (served with sweet and smoky jasmine rice, seasonal veg, fresh avocado and salsa fresca) and succulent steaks sourced from JK Fine Foods in Aberdeen.
Having had prior knowledge of the main courses from a previous visit, my parents suggested trying the Ginger Beef Rice Bowl which is a generous bowl of sweet and spicy beef served over Szechuan vegetables and jasmine rice.
This flavoursome, Chinese inspired dish ended up being the main course the whole family opted for and none of us regretted our choice. It was the perfect mix of aromatic spices and sweet notes that transported me back to China. Asian cuisine is my favourite and this dish did not disappoint.
With tender slices of beef in a tingling, Szechuan sauce on a bed of fluffy rice, it’s hard to see why you wouldn’t choose this bowl of goodness.
After an incredibly filling, yet beautiful meal, and having no room left for dessert, we called it a night (well, after a couple more gins…). My experience at Chop Bar and Grill was definitely a positive one and it’s a restaurant I see myself visiting time and time again – especially for the Mini Mac Sliders and the Sticky Toffee Pudding on the dessert menu that I was too full to taste.
The atmosphere within the restaurant was great and the service we received on the night was top class. There really were no negatives to the night – apart from maybe not being able to finish my main course and have a dessert but large portions are not something I can personally complain about – gimme it all! One thing I should mention is that there isn’t too much option for vegetarians which is something to take into account if this affects you.
But, Chop, I will be back.
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