The family started off serving up their meaty creations in street-food style. They still operate a weekday street food stand on Whitecross street near the Barbican Centre. Charlotte Street became their first permanent location for both eating-in and their butchery.
UPDATE – the Charlotte street location of Wild Game Co. has closed. They are still very active in their food stands and traveling butchery.
The meat served at the Wild Game Co. is delivered fresh from Scotland, from land owned by the family who also operates the London restaurants. The Highland estate provides all the wild venison and Scottish beef that one’s heart could desire. Anything that you can eat in the store can also be bought at the butchery to prepare in your very own home.
The venison burger actually won Best Signature Burger 2015 – probably by someone who’s job it is to eat more burgers than me. The Beowulf is a huge venison patty topped with pickled red cabbage, chili cheese, and both caramelized and crispy onions. Cooked medium, the Beowulf oozes a mouth-watering wine-red au jus as you can see to the left. The seeded brioche bun holds up against the delicious juices and the burger will cost you £8.95.
Their beef burger is called The Highlander; I tried both before writing this review, just to give venison its fair chance in the spotlight. The Highlander comes with cheese, gherkins, bresaola (a dried, aged salt beef strip), onions and lettuce for £7.95. It’s one place that really does cook a proper, medium pink burger and they do it really well. The bresaola adds a salty kick above the gooey cheese layer, while the rest of the toppings actually site below the patty.
Another thing I admire about Wild Game Co is that their veggie option isn’t a vegetable burger mush formed into the shape of a patty – it’s the MacDaddy – a macaroni and cheese patty topped with sweet chili sauce. No messing about with soy substitutes.
The Wild Game Co. also does their version of the beef dripping fry. Their fries don’t quite stack up to the quality of the Hawksmoor version, but they are a nice little take on it and only will cost you £2.75 for a generous portion. They are a rustic cut with skin left on and a tasty treat dipped in some of their side dipping sauces like the béarnaise, caramelized onion, red jon, or buffalo sauce.
All this is served in a non-pretentious environment. Unfinished wood walls and floors hark to the Scottish hunting lodge feel, yet Wild Game Co. has avoided the urge to cover the place in knick knacks and random decorations; a trap that many establishments would’ve fallen in to. Walking down the street, you can’t miss it – there is a massive stag statue glaring out on to Charlotte Street.
Wild Game Co. – 40/50
Beef (9): Juicy, but the perfect cooking preparation is what makes up ground on higher brow competitors.
Bun (6): Serviceable, but nothing special
Toppings (8): fresh, crispy, gooey, salty, delicious.
Value (9): For £7.95, the beef burger with all its accoutrements, is a great value.
Ambiance (8): Rustic, unfinished wood and non-pretentious hunting lodge feel.
You can find the Wild Game Co. at 65 Charlotte St, W1 4PQ or visit their website here.