Parrillan Borough Yards is a sister restaurant to Parrillan Kings Cross, which is a sister restaurant to Barrafina, which is one of the best restaurants in the city.
So, in short, it’s relatively good.
The idea is fairly simple. As with its North London sibling the space is evenly split between al fresco & indoor areas. Outside each table gets its own little personal grill (or parrillan) for DIY scorching of the various pre-marinated/rubbed/prepped regional Spanish treats on the menu. It’s sort of like a BBQ, only with all the not-fun stuff stripped away.
The space itself is in the shiny new Borough Yards development, where it’s taking dominion over a 40-person outdoor dining terrace & a sofa-strewn lounge area, all clasped by a gigantic brick railway arch. On the fringe of the lounge area, there’s a small garden centrepieced by a 300 year old olive tree, which itself is surrounded by a teeny tiny orchard of miniature lemon trees, magnolias, fig trees, stone pines, dwarf pines, Mediterranean herbs, and yet more olive trees.
Should you want to have your food cooked for you, then you can head inside the railway arch itself into the indoor area, where the chefs will dutifully grill your food for you at the open kitchen. Next to that is a small bar, and specially commissioned artworks from Cornish artist Dan Cook, who painted them specifically for the restaurant. Of course, the ideal scenario is to not see them at all, and instead to find yourself sat in front of your own grill, freshly loaded with white hot coals, and ready to sear anything within arm’s reach.
The menu is the same whether you’re inside or out – the only difference is who applies the heat to the various dishes, including king scallops, squid with pickled fennel, veal shanks, lamb sweetbreads with spring garlic, and more. And for dessert? You can get a burnt chocolate volcan (which they’ll burn themselves to save you the trouble), and a very handsome Piña Catalana, which involves crema Catalana served inside an entire pineapple. To share.
If you care to head along the corridor to the toilets, and just keep walking past them, you’ll quickly find yourself in the new Barrafina (set to open on July 29th), and if you keep walking past that you’ll end up in Bar Daskal (set to open on June 15th). Meaning that by the summer’s end you can have a few alfresco light bites, then dinner, and cocktails all at three different venues, all within the same spot.
Sounds like it’s arrived right on ‘cue…
NOTE: Parrillan Borough Yards is open Tuesday to Sunday. You can find out more at their website right here, or make a booking here.
Parrillan Borough Yards | 4 Dirty Lane, SE1 9PA
While you’re there… you can take a gander around Borough Market