Hattie Lloyd 04/06/24


Big news: the team behind top-quality meat suppliers Txuleta (it’s pronounced ‘choo-leh-tah’) is joining forces with chef-of-the-moment Richard Foster (it’s pronounced ‘Richard Foster’) on a brand new restaurant.

It’s going to be called Ibai (which means river in Basque), and it’s set to be a conduit for all the best produce flowing out of the Northern Basque region – which, given that the produce there is already considered some of the highest quality in Europe, is really saying something. The stars of the show, however, are the eponymous txuleta steaks.

ibai restaurant

Ibai’s taken over an old factory space on a tiny cobbled backstreet nestled between the Barbican, Smithfield Market and St Barts hospital. There’s space for just 80 diners, who’ll be settled into intimate semi-circular booths and surrounded by the natural, earthy palette of ‘the stormy French Basque sea’.

Sounds choppy.

Speaking of which, steak really is the star here – it’s being flown in like a world-famous celebrity. That’s because there’s a serious argument that Galician blond beef makes some of the best steak in the world. The thick, bone-in cuts known as txuleton come from ex-dairy cows which are at least eight years old, giving the beef a strikingly intense, mature flavour.

ibai team

Txuleta already supplies some of London’s top restaurants with this god-tier beef directly from Basque farms, and now they’re going to be bringing in the goods directly to the tables at Ibai. They’ve even started reading those mighty Galician cows on a farm in St Albans, with the ultimate intention to supply Basque-quality steak from just 20 miles away. And it’ll all be in excellent hands with Richard Foster – since his time as head chef at a quaint little neighbourhood spot called The Chiltern Firehouse, he’s been selling out a series of wildly popular supperclubs up at Dina in Leytonstone.

Aside from the steak, there’ll be a host of other French Basque classics on the menu, including teardrop peas (so precious they’re nicknamed ‘green caviar’), king crab rice, and Gateau Basque with almond and black cherries…

…and that really takes the cake.


NOTE: Ibai is open now – we’ll be back soon with the full scoop. In the meantime, you can book a table HERE.

PREVIOUS PERK: Nudge Members enjoyed three exclusive preview nights before opening, with 40% off the food bill. Don’t miss the next one: sign up for a free trial here.

Ibai | 90 Bartholomew Close, London, EC1 7BN

Steak fan? Make a pilgrimage to London’s best steak restaurants


90 Bartholomew Close, Barbican, EC1 7BN