The Scottish chef opens another breathtaking temple to meat: this time curry, this time in the City
When Temper opened it was the first day of the rest of Neil Rankin’s life.
A temple to smokey meaty goodness of every kind, food cooked in front of the diners, an homage to Mexican, with a mezcal specialty, bespoke designed cooking frames: it was the BBQ/streetfood zeitgeist with a refined sense of flavour and it landed in the middle of Soho with a swagger.
Rankin had worked his way to this steadily but seemingly with a laser focus through fine dining, working for Nuno Mendes, Jamie Oliver and Adam Perry Lang (at Barbecoa), Pitt Cue, John Salt and then the Smokehouse gastro joints (plus Bad Egg).
Everywhere he went, his name got bigger, was mentioned more and more, and the food got better, more Rankinesque. The chance to open Temper was a dream, just desserts and fate all rolled into one.
And now there’s Temper II (as they wisely chose not to call it). Temper in the City is to curry what Temper I (sorry) is to Mexican. It rolls out bone marrow in the masala, lamb scotch bonnet vindalo, dashi chip shop chicken, and more gins than you can, well, drink in a night; or a week.
The Scottish chef is a business and creative brain as well as an extraordinary kitchen talent and includes curry flourishes from around the globe and the City Temper looks set to wow diners and critics alike. (Jay Rayner wrote that if someone was to make a restaurant for him, it would be the first Temper.)
But could it all be too much? The modern day requirement of all-day dining has produced a highly unique breakfast menu, including banana curry and roti, avocado, poached egg and sambal roti, and bacon congee (not in the same bowl).
Rankin likes, he says, to keep his chefs inspired, so expect a menu that changes slightly depending on the day’s meat and fish and veg supply.