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What is your favorite London Restaurant & Why?

What is your favorite London Restaurant & Why?

Sep 10th, 2003, 12:01 PM
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What is your favorite London Restaurant & Why?

What is your favorite London Restaurant & why? We are going to be in London the first week in October and are looking for some "interesting" or "unique" places to have good food...maybe with a particularly quaint atmosphere, wonderful view or something special..suggestions which are not wildly expensive are especially welcome!
KathyM is offline  
Sep 10th, 2003, 12:31 PM
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Quaint surroundings and fine dining do not really sit side by side.

I could give you the usual reccomendations - any restaurant touched by Gordon Ramsey is fantastic, particularly Amaryllis or an apprentice of his' restaurant at the Connaught. However, getting a table at any of these can require a long waiting list.

One of the few traditional dining rooms, both rather grand are Simpsons in The Strand, or The Ritz.

Fifteen by Jamie Oliver isn't bad but I feel a bit pricey given its location and rather rustic menu.

The Ivy if you can get a table offers predictably good food, if a little traditional and naff.

If you are after a nice lunch try Paradiso Olivelli in St Christopher's Place, W1 - good service, and classic Italian food.

Just make sure you don't fall into the usually touristy restaurant traps.
m_kingdom is offline  
Sep 10th, 2003, 12:35 PM
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Another vote for Simpson's, for traditional English dining. You don't have to eat in the Divan room. The Knight's Bar, where Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson used to eat looking out on the Strand is quite nice for lighter fare.
ira is offline  
Sep 11th, 2003, 01:27 PM
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1. porters english restaurant 17 henrietta st THE PUDDINGS "steamed syrup sponge". our 1st night in london a friendly london gentleman showed us the way,he got off the bus 2 stops early to walk us to the door. been back to london 4 times always go there the 1st night.
2.ye olde cheshire cheese 145 fleet st rebuilt in 1667. many writers use to hangout here including dr johnson and a guy by the name of dickens, i think his 1st name was charles. his rolling chair is still there and may be sat on.
both serve dinner and are very resonable. tough to spend over $25 US per person.
we have never had trouble finding a pub for dinner, all seem neat in someway.
two other tips; 1. harry noman london tours private guide. really worth the money. tell him ray and connie gave you his name. a great guy. 2. london walks friday night pub walk along the thames. london walks owner and her husband are the guides. been on a number of london walks this one is the best.
if my wife and i could go only one place on vacation it would be london.
pennstateray is offline  
Sep 11th, 2003, 01:43 PM
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I respectfully disagree with m_kingdom's comment. I did experience fine dining at Rules, which has a Victorian atmosphere and very good food.
This despite the rush of pre-theatre dining. I wouldn't put it on a par with Gordon Ramsay or even with the Ivy (tho food is quite different) but I thought it was very good indeed.

KathyM, it would be easier if you could describe what you mean by 'not wildly expensive.' Do you have an amount or a range in mind? It's hard to get top- level dining at an economy rate. For less money you can dine pleasantly on good food, though it may not make the magazines or books.
elaine is offline  
Sep 11th, 2003, 01:53 PM
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make that dickens' _ROCKING CHAIR_ not rolling chair
pennstateray is offline  
Sep 11th, 2003, 02:29 PM
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Kathy, reasonable and fun for us is Brown's Restaurant on St. Martins Lane (not the hotel). I really like their steak and mushroom pie and sticky toffee pudding. Last time, my daughter and I had had a late afternoon tea and weren't very hungry, and they let us split the main course but order dessert for each of us. The waitress did ask where we were from and said she thought she recognized the "twang." I do prefer to think we have a southern accent rather than a Kentucky twang, but what do I know?
carolyn is online now  
Sep 11th, 2003, 02:34 PM
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Favourite: lunch Monday to Friday from noon to 2.15 in the students cafeteria downstairs in the School of Oriental and African Studies at the western corner of Russell Square, two blocks north of the British Museum. Why: to suit the clientele from across the world they serve a wide range of food, always marked by thoughtful and moderate use of spices. A two course meal costs 4 pounds 50. The conversation with these intelligent and travelled young people is good.

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ben_haines_london is offline  
Sep 11th, 2003, 03:40 PM
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Quite simply Fino (Charlotte Street) - the finest "fine" tapas restaurant outside of Barcelona. And a damned sight better than most in that city, come to think of it.
This is modern Spanish cuisine, made with the finest, freshest ingredients, and with finesse and understatement in wonderful surroundings, exceptional staff (now I never thought I'd say THAT about a London restaurant)and knowledgable too (with regards to the menu, wine list, spirits selection etc).
Finally, to top it off, its so well air conditioned and ventilated as to be practically smoke free... I've never noticed a single cigarette smoker on the numerous occasions I've been - and you will too, once bitten; forever smitten!
Its pretty new (March/April I think) and already causing quite a stir both in the London and national press.

Dr_DoGood is offline  
Sep 11th, 2003, 03:41 PM
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though it recalls fond memories, am surprised ye olde cheshire cheese is recommended. even back in 1977 it appeared as one of those "usually touristy restaurant traps" to be avoided.
Sep 12th, 2003, 03:06 AM
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A Victorian atmosphere? Am intrigued as to one existing in a distinctly 21st century London.

The best tapas in Charlotte St. if you are that way inclined is at the very reasonably prices Navarros - more authentic than Fino.
m_kingdom is offline  
Sep 12th, 2003, 06:28 AM
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Elaine -- I guess you put it well, I want to "dine pleasantly on good food". I've had occassion to spend a lot of time in NYC (work-related travel), and my experience there is that you don't have to spend a lot of money to have a very nice dining experience. I have successfully avoided the tourist traps and found many, many unique, reasonably priced restaurants with a lot of atmosphere.
KathyM is offline  
Sep 12th, 2003, 07:16 AM
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I think I was distracted by the word "quaint."
If you like Indian food, Chutney Mary's on the King's Road in Chelsea was recently renovated, is considered one of the best Indian places.

I haven't been there in a while, but I used to like the Grenadier, 18 Wilton Row, Belgrave Square. Candlelit, decent food, was one an original officer's mess. Plenty of tourists, but popular for good reason.
elaine is offline  
Sep 12th, 2003, 07:20 AM
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We ate at Vama in Chelsea - great Indian.... small restaurant that is nothing special from a "quaint or view". But very good food - we let the waitress pick for us... It was our favorite restaurant in London.
julie_Colorado is offline  
Sep 12th, 2003, 07:24 AM
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My favorite restaurant for lunch is Nicole's in Bond Street (basement of the Nicole Farhi shop). Always great food, very friendly staff, and good people-watching too.
Tulips is offline  
Sep 12th, 2003, 07:42 AM
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Last time I was in London, I thoroughly enjoyed WAGAMAMA, a fun Japanese noodle kind of place but with British attitude. It is near the British Museum and I stumbled into it after I left the museum around 5pm. My timing was perfect as when I left the line to get in was around the block. Check it out if you want a casual, inexpensive, satisfying meal.
nnrobnz is offline  
Sep 12th, 2003, 08:39 AM
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Etoile (Charlotte Street) is always for us the place to go first night. Cozy French(!) restaurant with great, rather inexpensive food.

miko is offline  
Sep 12th, 2003, 09:59 AM
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Another vote for Wagamama!
Tulips is offline  
Sep 12th, 2003, 10:01 AM
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Wagamama is quite nice for lunch, personally I don't like the food or the cafeteria style seating - one has to sit on the same bench and table next to other people, which can intrude rather on one's conversations.
m_kingdom is offline  
Sep 12th, 2003, 11:37 AM
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I was in London 2 yrs. ago for the first time in many, many years, so I cannot presume to be an expert on dining there. That said, my husband and I had an excellent dinner at Terrance Conran's Quaglino's. It is large, with a kind of bistro-type atmosphere, lots of hustle and bustle, but we enjoyed the experience. The Pavlova, for dessert, was memorable!
grandmere is offline  

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