On Thursday I was lucky enough to be invited to Chop Bloc in Chelmsford, Essex to sample some of their menu and learn all about their love of meat!
I have never been a huge meat fan, there was even one point (maybe two) where i went vegetarian, purely because I’m proper fussy when it comes to meat.
Needless to say, it didnt last long. My love of bacon and steak got the better of me!
Back to Thursday night, I arrived early and met the lovely Hannah (@hannatalks) beforehand for a quick coffee and catch up before taking our hungry tummies over to Chop Bloc.
We met Steve and Dave who are the owners and were hosting the evening. Both have a history in the meat business, and their family have been working with people in the industry for many years, so they have brilliant connections. This means that Steve and Dave strive to consistently know where their meat is coming from and ensure it is to the highest standard.
We started off by venturing to the Bloc Bar which is on the second floor of the bulding. The brilliant Mixologist, Thanda, came and spoke to each of us about the kind of flavours we like and if we wanted a sweet or sour cocktail. He was really good at finding out what we liked as individuals and created cocktails for us based on our preferences which i thought was a really nice touch.
We were then served a huge amount of canapés, from pork belly cubes to beef brisket and potato bites, these canapés really were something special!
Then came out platters of cured meats with bread and oil, not going to lie, i was in a pretty happy place with all the food and cocktails going on!
By this point i was starting to feel pretty full, and knowing we had more delights to try, we made our way downstairs to the main restaurant area.
When downstairs, we heard all about the different cuts of meat, while being shown where abouts they come from and what makes for the tastiest steaks! All of the beef is from Hereford cattle from right here in the UK, where they are able to roam freely on the farms and graze among the grass. This produces a really nice marbled beef, full of flavour!
Chop Blocs head chef Antonio then went on to tell us all about the different ageing process which they do all on site ensuring complete freshness on your plate!
They also butcher everything themselves which means your steak is always freshly sliced and cooked to perfection.
Antonio is obviously a whizz with the knife and he very quickly sliced the meat and showed us a range of cuts from sirloin to rump and chateaubriand.
It was so interesting to hear about what makes a really good steak and as everything is done in house, it means they make the most of the meat using the nicer offcuts for sausages and some of the outer fat for the grill meaning there is very little waste from each cut.
Antonio went off to cook some of the meat for us, as well as a range of side dishes to compliment the steak perfectly!
Meanwhile, we were treated to some wine tasting courtesy of James. We are talking some seriously sexy wines here, guys. From a crisp and smooth Riesling to a stunning Sauvignon Blanc (my personal fave) and probably the nicest red I have tastest, the Catena Malbec.
Charles Smith Kung Fu Girl Reisling 2014
Journeys End Weather Station Sauvignon Blanc 2015
Then came the beef…im talking all the beef. oh and all the sides. Hannah and I were almost drooling over the sight of the steak and Mac’ n Cheese!
Chorizo Sausages (front) and Gin & Tonic Salmon (back) are just a couple of the starter options. That salmon though…!!
Steamed greens, chunky chips, french fries and a selection of sauces accompanied the steaks perfectly!
My favourite of the meat was the T Bone steak and the rib which was just so tender and delicious!
We could have all happily continued to eat all evening but soon the meat sweats kicked in and we headed back up to the Bloc Bar for a dessert cocktail.
As i was very sadly driving, Thanda whipped me up a non alcoholic cocktail which he told me consisted of Creme de Cassis, Raspberry Puree and 25ml double cream all given a good shake up! It was so good!
If you are in the Chelmsford area (or even if not…. its worth the trip!) you need to visit Chop Bloc. Everyone who works there goes the extra mile to make sure you have the best experience and the best steak possible!
A huge thank you to Steve, Dave, Antonio and everyone at Chop Bloc for hosting such a lovely evening.
This post is a result of an complimentary event but all opinions and steak loving views are of course, my own.