May need some help from Chris and Arkwright as well as others on this one. Just read a report on places to dine in London, and I have never been nor heard of any of them. It may be that I have my favorites but I would enjoy anyones contribution to this situation. Here we go:
Polpo, Italian, 41 Beak st. in SOHO
Hawksmoor Seven Dials, steaks, 11 Langley St. in Covent Gardens
St. John Hotel, great breakfast, 1 Leicester St.
Princess Victoria, great wine list, 217 Uxbridge Rd in Shepherds Bush
Tayyabs, punjab, 83 Fieldgate st. in Whitechapel
Pitt Cue Co, BBQ, 1 Newburgh st. Soho
Hereford Road, British fare, 3 Hereford rd, in Bayswater.
The Ginger Pig, meat, 137 Askew Rd. in Shepherds Bush
The Hand and Flowers, variety, 126 West St. in Marlowe
The Company Shed, seafood, 129 Coast Rd on Mersa Island
Have read good things about these places, but before I would go would enjoy hearing from others if they have any comments on these places.
As someone going to London for the first time in May and an avid student of Marriott Insiders tips, I can remind everyone that you and Chrisf also had a great exchange of places to eat in the London Concierge Lounges? post. Thanks for all the great ideas.
Now if I can only find the free bus from the airport to the Renaissance - ha (then off to the Insider recommended London Marriott County Hall, again needing to learn ins/outs of tube use, oyster and travel cards, but I'm in great hands with folks like you, chrisf, arkwright and the rest of the gang) but that's for another thread and time, I'm studying up - thanks.
A word of clarification: there are several Anglesea's - with different, but very similar, spellings, in different parts of London.
The one I've used on several occasions is....
The food in the concierge lounge at St. Pancras was wonderful, and all day long.
Breakfast in the morning
Tea in the afternoon
Shorties in the early evening.
Dessert later in the evening
and the CL had butler service, so they bring your drinks to your table.
Eating in a restaurant is definately optional in my book. For instance I did order the hotel restaurant kidney and oxtail pie, as I love steak and kidney pie, and have never tried it made with oxtail. It was outstanding, even if it arrived late. Because it was the late the hotel did not charge for it. So even this was complimentary.
I would eat in the CL, go out and shop in the St. Pancras train station mall, come back for the next meal, go back out.
Great time and money saver - the CL!
Hawksmoor seven dials is a good steak restaurant. I have been once and would certainly return.
I haven't visited Hand & Flowers but I think it would be worth a visit if you are in the area. It is the first gastro pub awarded 2 stars.
My wife visited Michael Nadra's restaurant in Chiswick (6/8 Elliott Road, Chiswick, London W4 1PE) and keeps raving about it.
If one has time, there are a few places in London that I try to go each trip. They have never been anything but consistent. Prices vary, but here goes:
Pub food: The Audley, by Grosvenor Sauare
Beef: Simpson's on the Strand, next to the Savory Hotel
Diverse Food: Bibendum (The old Michelin Warehouse)
Splurge: The Ritz, for that special occasion, it is very beautiful and relaxing. Piano in the background.
Splurge II: Gordon Ramsey's on Hospital Road. This is one of the finest in the world to dine. They are very friendly and make it a memorable evening.
Hotel Meal County Hall Marriott has a newly renovated dining room. The food, ambiance, and history of the hotel make it ideal on a rainy night!
Planning on going back for Valentine's Day, and I had no idea that that is such a special day in London. Can't wait!
That is great to know! Have never heard of it, but if it's as good as the other Gordon Ramsey place, it has to be very special.
Thanks for sharing with us.
I should also mention two places that I found to be "Big Deals not worth it",
Hilton Towers, next to Buckingham Palace
Maybe it was just me, but I had bad experiences at both of these.
My wife has been to River Cafe and was underwhelmed. Based on her experience I haven't bothered visiting.
Petrus & The Ledbury are two of the best restaurants I have visited in London.
If you have enjoyed Ramsays other establishments you will not be disappointed if you visit Petrus.
Glad I am not the only person "Underwhelmed" at River Cafe!
Petrus, is on my list for the next trip. That's easy to remember, can't imagine how much a bottle of Petrus would cost there! I have only had Petrus once in my life and will never forget it!
Thanks for the suggestions!
Thanks for the advice! I alway get AMEX to make my dining reservations and usually book places 4 months out, (At least special places, like Petrus). It is amazing how wonderful they treat you when AMEX calls. They must have a lot of "Pull" with fine places.
One example, I called myself to dine at Mr. Chao's in Hollywood, they said they had no openings on the night I could make it. I then called AMEX, they got me a CHOICE of times on the night I could make it! It was a great time, and their specialty "Peking Duck", was the best I have ever had!
Jerry, Ark,sg,chris,nal and other fellow Anglophiles
Before I use Jerry's very clever idea of using my credit card concierge (thanks, great tip) to book restaurant reservations, could you please advise if any of the terrific restaurant recommendations above require a coat and tie. I'm a bit like the ol' ballplayer Ted Williams and would prefer not to have to pack a suit and carry it across the pond and with all of the interesting places to dine on my first visit, I was pretty confident I could still have a great culinary experience without the uniform.
I'm presuming Hand and Flowers and Audley as highly regarded gastro pubs are ok, but please warn if otherwise
Gordon Ramsey's on Hospital Road
Simpsons on the Strand
Apsleys (since I won't be pulling up in my Rolls, I realize 'sharp casual' dress slacks, long sleeve shirt may not cut it)
Thanking you in advance, erc
I have visited Petrus, Ledbury & Apsleys and did not wear tie or jacket to any of them.
The Ledbury is excellent, 2 star quality food and a relaxed environment as it is not in Central London.
Smart jeans accepted. Sportswear and shorts not accepted.
I haven't been to Ramsay on Hospital Road but will try to get there for lunch at some stage.
I would have though jacket for this restaurant but the website says the following:
Smart. No trainers, shorts or sportswear.
I haven't visited the others on your list, but apart from Simpsons they look casual places.
No problem, any questions just ask.
More places are moving away from the formal dining.
The types of restaurants that will require a jacket are:
La Gavaroche, Marcus Wareing at Berkerley Hotel, Waterside Inn to name a few.
These are more occassion type restaurants.
We visited Waterside Inn a few years ago and it was excellent, but it is one of those restaurants where you would not be a frequent visitor.
I would visit Ramsay at Hospital Road for the lunch menu as it is good value (in comparison to dinner) and Petrus for dinner.
That way you are experiencing both without spending a fortune.
You will not need a tie at:
Simpson's on the Strand
Before you go to a place like Gordon Ramsey's on Hospital Road, be prepared, I would not go there without being dressed up, however, there are many places you can dine for a "Whole lot less"!
There are so many fun/great places that to "Invest" a huge sum for dinner, (Unless you just want the experience), is probably not worth it.
Have you got a hotel picked out yet? If so, let us know so we can share places with you that are really "Worth it"!
erc, and others,
If you want to go to one of my favorite sites on London, and is a huge help. Go to:
You will see it all, including what 's going on there. I get it once a month and it is very helpful.
I just visited this restaurant at lunch time:
I thought this might be of interest if you like Indian food. It was good value, portions were good size and tasty.
The main course of Seafood Biryani was very good.
Jerry, it has been fascinating just doing a catch up on this posting. I too have not dined at any of the places listed in your original email ... but, I am not surprised, restaurants seem to rise and fall in popularity very frequently in London as elsewhere ... and there are just so many in London as in New York, as in Washington DC, as in Paris ......... a lifetime of dining!!
Like you and many people, I stick to favourites generally but do venture outside my known set if I see a particular good review or am recommended to one by my sons ... they seem to spend far too much time dining in London restaurants!
I use a site called www.bookatable.com to find great deals ... they often have a fixed price dinner at many of the mainstream London restaurants, e.g. Sunday Lunch at Claridges was only £30 per head a while back ... I don't know the current cost. Roux at the Landau were offering a 3 course dinner for £30 on the last emailing that I received.
Last night we were in London meeting our youngest son ... we went to a new pub called Hunter S in Dalston ... it is apparently named after Hunter Stockton Thompson and is referred to as a 'speakeasy' type pub. Atmosphere was interesting, service and food were good. I've not yet seen it on any of the major food critics' websites. Just proves that local knowledge can be very useful, eh?!
I am always willing to accompany MRIs in researching London dining facilities ...
One of our favorite London Restaurants is Gaylord which has been existence since the 1940 and 1950s with establishments in Delhi, Bombay, Singapore, and as their web states,
"Gaylord is a brand recognised by many as an institution where their parents or grandparents took them out for first taste of finest curry.", and has become a family tradition when visiting London or Singapore. There also use to be one in NYC near the UN but it burnt down and was never rebuilt.
Your mention of the Gaylord reminds me of an occasion in the late 1970's when that establishment gained a certain notoriety in Whitehall.
This arose as a result of the fact that the then Secretary of State for Employment - Michael Foot, who was later to became Leader of the UK Labour Party - was a particular devotee of the restaurant and was known sometimes to take to take confidential papers with him to study over lunch. On one occasion, the meal was apparently so exceptionally good that the Minister left without his papers - including a final draft of a highly contentious piece of employment/labour legislation. Panic struck when officials realised that the minister returned back empty handed!
The problem was happily resolved a few minutes when a waiter from The Gaylord appeared at the Entrance Desk clasping some grubby papers which he had brought by bus - without having the vaguest idea of their content.
Was not aware of this.
Probably didn't make it into our new broadcasts.
but this does seem like a perfect example of just how attentive the service is. They are use to dealing with world leaders, heads of state, etc.
Whether we were in London or Singapore, we had to stop by Gaylords's out of family tradition. I always have the Rava Dosa & Kulfi for dessert. They make the best Kulfi. Its to die for.
My eldest son is also equally keen to try it, so we'll check it out soon. We used to love Veeraswamy's in Regent Street but it was 'modernised' some years ago and lost the colonial feel ... after that it fell from grace with us and we haven't been back since. If Gaylords' works for us in London, I'll try the Singapore branch when we are there next February.
Jerry, we have just dined at a new location ... the Gaucho in Hampstead. There are several of these restaurants in London and I have dine at 3 others but the Hampstead one has the edge. I would guess that the nearest Marriott is Regents Park. We spent some time walking around Hampstead ... the houses are amazing ... I didn't bother looking to see how much they cost! Gaucho Hampstead, 64 Heath Street, NW3 1DN
Thanks for the information! Good steaks are sometimes difficult to find and very expensive in London! This sounds like a great place to go. Would it be a place to go when "The World Tour", comes to London?
I know County Hall has a new and very good steak house, we would want to surely have dinner there one night.
Chris, what is the name of the famous fish and chip place in Litton Grove, in London? Or is it Lisson Grove, up by Marble Arch. Have seen it on the food channel, but never been there and would like to try it.
The Gaucho in Piccadilly is good and centrally located: http://www.gauchorestaurants.co.uk/restaurants/restaurant.php?id=piccadilly
Also as mentioned in your initial question Hawksmoor is a good steak restaurant also well located close to Covent Garden: http://thehawksmoor.com/locations/seven-dials
I haven't been to Goodman but it has been rated and reviewed highly: http://www.goodmanrestaurants.com/section.php/2/1/steak_mayfair_london
Maybe this is the fish and chip place? http://www.seashellrestaurant.co.uk/ i have never been there so could not comment on it.
I find the Gaucho in Piccadilly a little dark for eating. I like the upstairs bar and the service but downstairs they are too fond of turning the lighting down. My favourite is the one at Tower Bridge. Thanks for the tip on the Hawksmoor ... looks good. I am sure that my sons will be delighted to help me check it out!
Visited a couple of good inexpensive restaurants recently.
Barrafina http://www.barrafina.co.uk/ was very good. There are no reservations and only 25 stools. We arrived at noon when it opened, and by the time we were leaving there were quite a few people standing in the queue waiting to be seated. Everything we ordered was good, the real stand out though were the tortilla's:
|Prawn and Piquillo Pepper Tortilla||£6.90|
|Jamón and Spinach Tortilla||£6.90|
This is well worth a visit but due to the no reservations policy you do need to get there near the beginning of the lunch or dinner sittings.
Another decent place was Wahaca http://www.wahaca.co.uk/flash/main.html visited two of their locations one in covent garden and the other on the Southbank.
This is really good mexican food for the UK. Prices are good, very relaxed and very fast delivery of the food.
Like Barrafina this has a no reservation policy, but the places are a reasonable size though.
The Wahaca Selection on the menu is good and enough for 2 people. http://www.wahaca.co.uk/flash/downloads/Wahaca_menu.pdf
If you are walking over from County Hall as JC would be doing, then Herman ze German is also a good place to have a snack whilel on the go: http://www.herman-ze-german.co.uk/locations.html it is just up the road from Gordon's Wine Bar: http://www.gordonswinebar.com/default.php
Yes, I would be walking, probably across Westminster Bridge!
These are great recommendations! I have been to Gordon's Wine Bar and really enjoyed it!
Don't forget next May, maybe we all can "Duck out" and have a "Fish Taco" and a "Glass" for "The Queen of Taco's", "Miss Pluto"!
"The Texas Embassy" just off Trafalgar Square? I thought the Mexican food there was pretty good,
Thanks again for your additions to "London dining"!
Yes, please help! While I've found a few good pubs in the East End and near Westminster, I have yet to find a great restaurant in London. (I prefer seafood, continental, and elegant.) I changed by reservations from West India Quay to my favorite London County Hall. I don't want to go West or North (much), but East or South is fine. Any ideas
For one nearby memorable dinner, have the Concierge at the hotel, make you a reservation at Simpson's on The Strand, table 7, ask for Thomas the Captain to insure you have a wonderful meal. This is a place that is reasonably priced and famous for it's beef.
It's next to The Savoy!
Hi Prof ... I have been 'missing in action' (refurbing my son's bathroom) for a few weeks, so only just picked up on this set of updates. When are you in London? Could be an opportunity for an MRI meeting if you would like ... my wife is also always up for a nice dinner in London! As SG suggests, J Sheekey and Bentleys are great restaurants ... Green's is also great and I think that it's owned by Camilla Parker Bowles ex-brother-in-law (?) ... not that that says anything for the quality of the food but all three restaurants are pricey. One of our favourites is in Battersea (same side of the river as County Hall) ... it's a family run Italian restaurant called Positano. We have always been very impressed when we have been there ... they do have fish on the menu but it's not their main focus ...Positano Restaurant
Thanks for the idea, but alas it is not to be this trip. If you've followed my other posts you'll know I've been sick as a dog since I arrived in London and only briefly left my hotel room last night. Judging by what I've heard on TV I seem to fit the norovirus category -- came on very suddenly and awfully and is ever so slowly improving. But I've barely eaten since I got here. I am so glad I am at the Marriott West India Quay, which is wonderful in every way and let me in around 7:30am yesterday.
Maybe next time?
More London threads
I live in England so I hope I can add something helpful. As we presumably have members across the globe, it would be great if we could build a guide to restaurants world wise for like-minded Marriottites.
Ok, I'll break this down by category:
Breakfast/brunch: The Delaunay, The Wolsey, Roast (for English breakfast)
Indian/curry: Anywhere on Brick Lane, most places in Tooting (off the tourist track, Rasa
Grandeur: Gordon Ramsay @ Claridges, Savoy Grill (actually, bet avoided on seconds thoughts)
Haute Cuisine: Gordon Ramsay on Royal Hospital Road, Alain Ducase @ The Dorchester, The Fat Duck in Bray (out of London, reservations essential)
Steak: Hawkomoor (avoid the steak house @ the JW on Park Lane, I would tear clear of Gaucho too)
Japanese: Nobu, Roka, Zuma (pricey)
Also worth a look: Maze @ Grosevenor Square,The Ivy, Pollen Street Social
This is a short list, so if I can be of any further help, please let me know. Enjoy!
Wow, you can really add a lot to MRI!
The only place I have dined on this list is Gordon Ramsay, Hospital lane, two times and it was great! Jean-Claude, The M-D, will take good care of any MRI!
This is Jean-Claude with Nancy, he is a real wonderful host!
Thank-you so much for your contribution, we all appreciate your comments!