You don't have to travel to the end of the world for great steak
Located on King's Rd in Chelsea, this grade II building stands out like an architectural gem, this old tavern once stood on the edge of London and has so much history that it even has its own Wikipedia page! But today, inside, it's probably quite different to how it would have looked in 1897.
Industrial lighting hangs from the ceiling.
The walls are tiled, the windows large, with a choice of seating and a warm ambience at night creating a cosy atmosphere.
The busy kitchen was in full view with their meat proudly on display but this was no ordinary steak restaurant. The meat is supplied by José Gordón's El Capricho restaurant in Spain, considered by some to have the finest steak on the planet. This is his first collaboration with a restaurant in the UK and the only place to find it on these shores. Read more about El Capricho here.
But it's not just meat...a selection of fresh fish and seafood was on display too.
We were seated quickly, then the waiter explained the story behind the current incarnation of The World's End: Inspired by watching the Netflix documentary 'Steak Revolution' one man began a quest to open a steak restaurant where the meat would come from happy cows who'd lived till they were 12 years old. I've read Mark Schatzker's book 'Steak' so I think I understand. Quality meat comes from happy cows, e.g. Wagyu comes from cows which are massaged and fed beer!
With menus in hand our drinks order was taken. As we were going for the red meat options we took a bottle of house red: a Ponte Pietra 2016 Merlot Corvina (£22), which was light and thin, not the fruitiest but low on tannins so very drinkable.
Carpaccio from entrecote (£17) - matured for 100 days, sliced really finely and served with olive oil and sea salt. Soft-textured meat which was simple and delicious!
Steak tartare (£17) - premium ox with a strong tomato taste, good texture and a bit of spice, personally we'd have preferred a bit more caper and Tabasco zing but the meat was exceptionally tasty!
Picanha top sirloin steak (£29) - 100-day matured, served rare as suggested.
This was quality meat but I'd say it needed a bit more salt and cooking - there was actually sea salt on the table but I think medium-rare or medium is required to bring out the maximum Maillaird flavour potential.
El Capricho premium ox burger (£16) - served medium, unsurprisingly with a similar texture to the steak tartare. A good burger, not the fattiest, served with onion, lettuce and a nippy mustard dressing.
The pudding selection included ice cream (£3.80) or apple crumble with ice cream, hazelnut & caramel cheesecake, chocolate fondant or vanilla pannacotta - these were all £5.50 each. There was also a cheese plate with five English cheeses for £9.50.
We had the chocolate fondant with vanilla ice cream (£5.50), and this was very pleasant. Served warm with a gooey melted chocolate centre as all good chocolate fondants should be!
And the vanilla pannacotta (£5.50). A light, refreshing pannacotta, and one where you could taste the vanilla! This was served with a tart wild berry coulis.
The World's End market impressed us, it's a popular spot in a historic building with a modern functional interior and open kitchen serving great Spanish meat. We were greeted on arrival by staff who were knowledgeable and approachable throughout. We enjoyed all our courses, though if we go back I'll ask for the Picanha cooked medium instead.
Negatives are that for a steak restaurant the knives weren't the sharpest and the tables are too close together, as a result we got to hear some interesting conversations on both sides of us, including a woman who wasn't allergic to, but wouldn't eat certain things and was very particular about wine - she could only drink certain types of white wine too!? It was a bit pricey for the portions too but then top quality steak is expensive no matter where you go and where else will you find meat from José Gordón in the UK?
Toilets were clean and functional.
View the World's End Market menu here.
+ Very quick, efficient service
+ High-quality meat
+ Staff get a thumbs up for dealing with the customer opposite us who had a list of things she wouldn't eat or drink!
+ Beautiful building
+ Clean toilets
+ Good location
- Could do with sharper knives, especially for steak
- Tables very close together
The Worlds End, 459 King's Rd, Chelsea, London SW10 0LR
We travelled by tube to Sloane Square then got a bus along King's Rd. You can catch the 11, 22 or 328.
Disclaimer: We were lucky enough to receive a complimentary meal but Fred says this is a truthful write-up. He was totally jealous when he saw the pictures!