Sure, their name may seem more likely emblazoned on the t-shirts of a stag clan across the Magaluf shores, but Balls Brothers Minster Court is a British inspired eating niche in the heart of the City, and we headed down to see if it can live up to its patriotic grub.
While Brits often like to think themselves humble by worldly comparison (or at least this whole obsession tea thing keeps telling me that), Balls Brothers Minster Court makes no bones about it. Lavish, and ample in size, there's more autumnal hues than Hyde Park in high season. With a brasserie that screams with steamed white table cloths, long-necked lounging and the chinking of glasses, the dining space had a pretty strong, gallant air, conjoined with a more laid back drinking area of punched leather seating and mirrored photo frames. Think Habitat meets country estate.
The Food and Drink
Balls Brothers pride themselves on their drink menu with good reason, we really did have plenty to choose from. With a handy guide to whisky for those after particular strengths to an impressive wine menu, Balls Brothers have a great range to choose from. Dipping into the cocktail menu, hardened cocktail fans will like their bold, brash and spirit laced collection. I've got to say that their British based menu was pretty empirical and patriotic, with their 'Pegu Club' packing a 20th century punch.
Approachable food seemed to be what Balls Brother did best. While the menu was far smaller than expected (all of six main dishes to choose from), our meal consisted of quail's eggs with sea salt, a bold portion of beer battered fish and chips that keep British tastes at bay at £13, and butternut squash risotto at £11. While all seemingly basic dishes, those not looking to be torn away with confusing flavours are sure to love what Balls Brothers have to offer. They did home comforts and they did them pretty well.
Our only qualm was with the vegetarian menu. As someone that is thinking of jumping the meaty fence, and spending dinner with a vegetarian boyfriend at that, Balls Brothers lacked completely. As in, not a single vegetarian starter and the ever royal, yet ever expected risotto lacked.
Let's be honest, nowhere in the City really screams with London excess on a Friday night, you're all trying to get outta there. And while the night was slightly warm and the tables outside were plotted, inside was sadly bare for such a bold space. The staff were lovely, more than attentive and there were gaggles of guests spotted about, but the brasserie was all but empty. Okay, it was empty. Balls Brothers often feels like a venue with a name to live up to, with interiors to adore, but maybe the Minster Court crowd missed a trick? Most of the venues around the area also weren't swimming with guests, so may location could be to blame on this one?
While the meals were upstanding, the drinks ample and the service that only my mum's Christmas meal attentiveness can compare to, there's something about Balls Brothers Minster Court which lacks a slice of excitement. While sure to be a haven for suited sippers in the week thanks to its city location, it seems like there might be more to be done when it comes to their weekend serving. With so beautiful a brasserie, it would be a shame to see such a British inspired institution go to waste.