The Coal Shed: Does This Steak Restaurant Sling Out The Best Roast In Brighton?

Over on Boyce's Street, a back alley wedged between The Lanes and the city's brash West Street, The Coal Shed in Brighton has been doing great things with meat since 2011. And despite its location, Riz Helalat (who also owns The Salt Room and Burnt Orange) has been so successful with this restaurant that he even opened a second outpost in London's ritzy One Tower Bridge development. 

Our seaside branch has long been a mainstay of the date-night and business-dinner crowd who know they can rely on it to serve fancy fillets, succulent sirloins and, er, rather fine ribeyes. But can it compete with Brighton's almost overabundance of excellent pubs for the roast dinner market? We put on our Sunday best and pulled up a pew to investigate.

The Coal Shed: Steak Restaurant Brighton | DesignMyNight

The Brighton outpost is just as slick as The Coal Shed in London.

At night, the functional plain square that is The Coal Shed’s dining room can seem moody and intimate. By day, however, the no-nonsense geometry turns it into something more like a chic Parisienne bistro; the wooden tables and bare walls bounced the relaxed weekend conversations around the space, giving it the convivial, laid-back atmosphere of a welcoming pub. Family-friendly, but with cosy brown leather banquettes for intimate schmoozing, there was a place for everyone.

The Coal Shed Restaurant Brighton Reviews | DesignMyNight

If you're looking for the best restaurants Brighton has to offer, this one has to be up there.

The usual fare the restaurant is famous for was still available — prime porterhouses and classy Chateaubriands — but we were here for the roast (£24.50 per head). And they didn't cluck about with chicken or mince around using lamb; the only meat on offer was the mooing kind, and we had no beef with that. Just 500g of roasted, salt-aged sirloin from your finest cow for two to share, presented on hefty Staub iron skillets accompanied by all the trimmings. Think golden beef dripping roasties, fluffy Yorkshire puddings as big, deformed and strangely beautiful as The Elephant Man’s head, fresh seasonal greens, plus plump glazed carrots, decadently drizzled in a roast beef jus.

You can nab starters too, not that you'd need them — the portions were huge. We had a poached egg with hollandaise, tenderstem broccoli, pine nuts and pesto (£10) plus a Cornish crab salad boasting green beans, avocado and a grapefruit vinaigrette (£15). Both were excellent, but ultimately unnecessary. The desserts had also been overkill, but oh-so-worth-the-calories: tonka crème brûlée with strawberries and orange sable (small yet perfect), as well as churros elevated by lime sugar and dulce de leche (both £8).

The Shed Brighton Review | DesignMyNight

Make your way over to The Shed Brighton for a seriously sumptuous Sunday roast.

As for drinks, the abstemious friend had a Tropical Spritz (£9) made with Pentire Seaward non-alcoholic gin, citrus and pineapple juice, plus pomegranate and basil tonic: “nice but basically a lemonade”. While non-abstemious me ordered a fiery-hot Spicy Carrot (£12), a marriage of tequila, ginger liqueur, citrus, carrot, chilli syrup and orange bitters, served in a pretty coupe glass. So dirtily good, I could have drank them all night, but then wouldn’t have remembered anything about the meal I was supposed to review. Instead, I opted for a glass of the house red, a decent Spanish syrah, El Campeon from Aragon (£7).

The DesignMyNight Digest

We had a wonderful time at The Coal Shed – a swanky Saturday night fine diner that turned into an easy-like-a-Sunday-morning gastropub, delivering strapping chunks of prime cattle accompanied by perfectly cooked vegetables. The relaxed service and friendly atmosphere were definitely the cherry on top. Next time I'm craving a roast, I know where I'll be going.

  💰 The damage: £118 plus service charge.

  📍  The location: 8 Boyce's Street, BN1 1AN.

  👌 Perfect for: Carnivores with big appetites.

 ⭐ Need to know: The Coal Shed Brighton's sister restaurants are equally as divine.


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