Taberna do Mercado review – food so good the City doesn’t deserve it
★★★★★ / Portuguese

Taberna do Mercado review – food so good the City doesn’t deserve it

Sophisticated Portuguese food satiates the cravings you never knew you had If Spanish and Portuguese cuisine were human siblings, then Spanish food would undoubtedly be the attention-grabbing overachiever. From paella, jamon iberico de bellota and Cantabrian anchovies to the heady heights of modernist Basque and Catalan cooking, Spain has it all. Portugal, on the other hand, rarely … Continue reading

Morada Brindisa Asador review – charcoal-fired tapas comes to Piccadilly
★★★☆☆ / Spanish / Tapas

Morada Brindisa Asador review – charcoal-fired tapas comes to Piccadilly

Big and small plates of charcoal grilled and baked meat Brindisa is one of the older tapas mini-chains in London, having sprouted as an off-shoot of a Spanish goods import operation more than a decade ago. Perhaps because its existence is therefore taken for granted, it’s rarely spoken of in the same excitable or reverential tones … Continue reading

Bo Drake review – the Soho Asian barbecue where there’s smoke but no fire
★★★☆☆ / Barbecue/BBQ / Eclectic / Korean

Bo Drake review – the Soho Asian barbecue where there’s smoke but no fire

It’s Korean-ish BBQ with a dash of Mexican. Sort of. Around Christmas/New Years time I usually got a small shovel-load of emails asking me to predict what the restaurant trends for the coming year will be. Putting aside my view that being so beholden to the trends of the day is a sign of a weak mind … Continue reading

The Manor review – proof that Clapham isn’t just for wankers
★★★★☆ / Modern European / Modernist

The Manor review – proof that Clapham isn’t just for wankers

Entire menu reviewed at intriguing Clapham surprise When I’d heard that a restaurant in Clapham, The Dairy, was serving high quality, complex and beguiling food I dismissed the reports as utter lunacy. I regarded Clapham as full of nothing more than crap bars transplanted from the Costas and stuffed to the rafters with wannabe Hooray Henrys braying about … Continue reading

Chiltern Firehouse review – sound the alarm, this place is on fire
★★★★☆ / Modern European / Modernist

Chiltern Firehouse review – sound the alarm, this place is on fire

Marylebone celeb hangout serves good grub I like to make repeat visits to restaurants before writing a review for any number of reasons, from trying to get a feel for the kitchen’s style to giving wobbly staff a chance to get their act together. Or simply because I really enjoy what they serve. Making repeat visits to Chiltern Firehouse … Continue reading

House of Ho review – modern Vietnamese food shakes up Soho?
★★★☆☆ / Vietnamese

House of Ho review – modern Vietnamese food shakes up Soho?

No sniggering in the back The vast majority of Vietnamese restaurants in London have very traditional menus and tend to be clustered together in Hoxton and Deptford, with smaller concentrations in other places such as Hammersmith. Soho’s House of Ho is a very different affair. The exposed brick walls, moody lighting and odd contemporary art … Continue reading

Foxlow review – the Farringdon meat restaurant that’s not St John
★★★☆☆ / Barbecue/BBQ / Eclectic / Steak/chophouse

Foxlow review – the Farringdon meat restaurant that’s not St John

The Hawksmoor that’s not a Hawksmoor Foxlow is the latest restaurant from the guys behind the Hawksmoor mini-chain of steakhouses, but it tries to be different by concentrating on meats other than steak. I say ‘tries’ quite deliberately, as you can still order various cuts of steak at Foxlow. Even if this wasn’t the case, Foxlow’s … Continue reading

Smokehouse review – Islington barbecue gastropub
★★★★☆ / Barbecue/BBQ / Gastropub

Smokehouse review – Islington barbecue gastropub

Where there’s smoke, there’s fire? When I surveyed the state of American-style barbecue in London, one of the most common queries was ‘what about Smokehouse?’. However, despite its name Smokehouse isn’t devoted purely to barbecue. This joint venture between Neil Rankin, former head chef at Pitt Cue, and the people behind the nearby Pig and … Continue reading

HKK review – Chinese fine dining in the City
★★★★☆ / Chinese / Chinese Dumplings / Chinese Noodles

HKK review – Chinese fine dining in the City

Suits you or just for suits? Hakkasan was one of the restaurants that helped foster the idea that Chinese food in London wasn’t just greasy take away fare. HKK is a new City spin-off of the Soho original, but with an emphasis on expensive tasting menus that befits its location in the shadow of capitalism’s … Continue reading