I like the Soulville Steakhouse, it is pretty much what it says it is. It is a Steakhouse with a Soul Music theme what more do you need to know? Located up on Queen Street in the Elite building it is but a short stroll from the Royal Centre tram stop and a couple of minutes up the hill from the Old Market Square Tram stop. We headed up here on Friday evening basically with the sole intention of getting a steak.
Inside it is dimly lit, soulful, and almost a bit like a speakeasy feel. The walls are adourned with posters, show bills, and pictures of soul singers from the 1960′s. In the window is a black lambretta (not sure why) and inside by the bar is an old fashioned juke box complete with glitter ball overhead. The restaurant is on two levels with a black cast iron stairway leading up to a small mezzanine area to where we were guided. A nice quirky feature was that instead of having numbers on the tables, each table is named after a soul singer denoted with a small brass plaque, our table was the Sam Cooke table, and a nice touch was that on the table was a laminated sheet with a potted history of the Artist so you got your own theme within a theme.
As it was a steak house I felt that I just had to have a steak, so I ordered up a 12oz Sirloin Steak medium-rare for £15.95. They give you a little bit of a steak description on the menu just in case you have never eaten a cow before ‘- A very distinctive taste, not as juicy as Rump or Ribeye, but always more consistently tender’ Not sure how helpful that was, perhaps we could just get a little bit of those to try as well? I suppose it depends on where you are, I recall sitting in a steakhouse in New Orleans as they brought a trolley of huge chunks of uncooked meats to our table to show us (a tad over the top). The menu also tells you that the meat is “PRIME BRITISH BEEF” all in big capitals with the warning that ‘Quality isn’t cheap – but we think you’re worth it!‘. I would have been interested to see somewhere on their website or menu where the steaks actually do come from. Not because I am questioning their provenance or claims, but because when eating in a good steakhouse, it is the little details like that which add to the story.
Well I guess it would be more useful and really help if I was to tell you if my steak was any good or not. It was a good steak, cooked just as I asked, juicy, nicely pink inside. The fat could have been a little bit crispier (I do like to be able to eat everything from the beast). There was only a little bit that my teeth refused to chomp through but I still sucked that bit dry of all its flavor. I was pleased to say that the accompanying sides were just right for me on this occasion. The thickly cut chips were about right, chunky full of solid potato, and lightly salted. I did add some vinegar as well. I ordered an additional pot of sauce to go with my steak, a ‘red wine, smoked bacon and mushroom’ offering for another £1.70. Not bad, nice flavor, It mopped up well with the chips. There was a single onion ring and half a grilled tomato, which initially one might think was somewhat minimal, but you know this meal was all about the steak, so just for once I was happy to have the threat of distraction removed from my eyeline. There was some salad that arrived on the plate, a small frissee of lettuce, the salad also left with the plate as well. Still if nothing else it did get a little day trip out from the kitchen for an hour or so.
Just for the record Martin had the 9oz Fillet for £19.95 for those of us who needed a cow lesson the menu tells you that it is “Cut from the tenderloin, a totally non weight bearing muscle, so, always soft, juicy and very tender” I just had to add that info as he takes a better picture than I so it was worth putting it into the post so I could include it.
Overall I do like coming to the Soulville Steakhouse, it is one of the better themed places in Nottingham and pretty much deals well in its chosen field of speciality – the world of steak. On the face of it I know I often think or rather wonder why I am paying someone to cook me a steak, It is practically meat cooking 101 and secretly or often openly one usually questions how hard is it for a professional chef to cook steak, even I manage it on occasion, but then again I like my steak somewhere between rare and well-done or as described in our house ‘as it comes’ so I suppose that basically I am saying that I know that if I go out for a steak I am going out to get the best cuts of meat cooked perfectly and even better be safe in the knowledge that I didn’t mess it up again. I can say happily that Soulville didn’t mess it up so mission accomplished.
One additional bonus was that since we were here between 5-7pm we got a 15% discount, if we had turned up before 5pm we would have got a 25% discount. I didn’t think that was too shabby and we are all grateful for those extra pennies.
Soulville Steakhouse is at The Elite Building on Queen Street in Nottingham, nearest Tram stops are at the Old Market Square and The Royal Centre. Well worth checking out if you like a simply cooked steak and if you like Motown music then even better that is a little added bonus.