Palatino: ‘Better than in Rome’

Palatino: ‘Better than in Rome’

Palatino, 71 Central Street, London EC1V 8AB (020 3481 5300). Meal for two, including drinks and service: £60 to £90 The late AA Gill was once so infuriated by the quality of the food he was served at a London Italian that he left the restaurant, hailed a cab to Heathrow, jumped on a plane and a […]

Sushi Atelier: ‘It’s impressive without being neurotic’

Sushi Atelier, 114 Great Portland Street, London W1W 6PH (020 7636 4455). Meal for two, including drinks and service: £70-£110 Good restaurants make us think better of ourselves. They create a mood and then, by granting us a seat, co-opt us into it. Sushi Atelier, on London’s Great Portland Street, makes me feel like a better […]

Nuala, London: ‘Some beautiful moments

Nuala, 70-74 City Road, London EC1Y 2BJ (020 3904 0462). Meal for two, including drinks and service, £120 Sometimes this job is akin to going down the bookies, only with more despair and no fruit machines. You’re looking for a winner, so you study the lineage, like some dodgy eugenicist. Where have the key personnel […]

Wood, Manchester: ‘There’s a lot to love’

uring my 14 hours in Manchester, for seven of which I was asleep, four people warned me off walking the 0.9 miles between my hotel and Piccadilly station. It seems the spice-smokers of Piccadilly Gardens have imbued the locals with a weary, unvarnished tilt on tourist info. Manchester’s social problems don’t affect my tastebuds in the […]

Parsons, London: ‘Food you can’t forget’

Parsons, 39 Endell Street, London WC2H 9BA (020 3422 0211). Meal for two, including wine and service £60 to £90 It was the chips that sealed it. The croquettes played a part, as did the brown crab pissaladière. Oh, and the clam chowder. We’ll come back to those. But the chips. I only ordered them […]

Roganic, London W1: ‘Already a place for chefs, bloggers and blaggers’

On entering Roganic, it was clear I needed a new false name for booking tables. “Mitford”, after my beloved Nancy (not her Hitler-loving fruitcake sister Unity) had lasted exactly four critical ambushes before being sussed and spread across hospitality’s intelligence network. Actually, that makes the chef grapevine sound far too chic and diligent. In reality, it’s just chefs […]

Sanxia Renjia, London: ‘Enough excitement for a month’

Sanxia Renjia, 36 Deptford Broadway, London SE8 4PQ (020 8692 9633). Meal for two including service: £50-£75 There is just one other person at Sanxia Renija, in Deptford, when we arrive for an early dinner. He is alone, working his way through a quarter of crispy duck and pancakes. Oh dear. On the one hand, […]

L’Escargot, London: ‘Let’s hope it never changes’

L’Escargot, 48 Greek Street, London W1D 4EF (020 7439 7474). Meal for two, including drinks and service, £100 to £140 L’Escargot is your stylish auntie, the one who knows how to grow old gracefully; who had that green velvet halterneck from Biba back in the day but knew when to stop wearing it. Has she surrendered […]

Henry’s, Bath: ‘A thoroughly lovely expression of the owner’

Henry’s, 4 Saville Row, Bath BA1 2QP (01225 780055). Meal for two, including wine and service: £90 to £110 Recently I took part in a conference event on the future of the dining experience. Or should I say “experience”? It felt like inverted commas were everywhere. It was all about “data capture” and “personalisation”. Us […]

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