1251 review – this Islington restaurant is trying to make a name for itself…
★★★☆☆ / Eclectic / Modern European / Modernist

1251 review – this Islington restaurant is trying to make a name for itself…

… but is coming up short. Names can be many things. A descriptive label, a pigeonhole, a statement of intent. It’s therefore striking that Islington restaurant 1251 has such an easily forgotten, easily misremembered name. It may have some significance to someone behind the scenes, especially in light of the fact that chef James Cochran … Continue reading

Little Duck The Picklery review – the height of summer in the depths of winter
★★★★★ / Eclectic

Little Duck The Picklery review – the height of summer in the depths of winter

Picklery not gimmickry. The sweet life. Keep it sweet. A sweet deal. Sweet as honey. Sweet as pie. Our understandable preoccupation with sweetness and sweet foods is so deeply ingrained that the word itself has become a synonym for all that is desirable and good in the English language. But this has also blinded us, … Continue reading

Kashmir, Putney review – menu handholding that doesn’t infantilise the diner
★★★★★ / Indian/South Asian

Kashmir, Putney review – menu handholding that doesn’t infantilise the diner

Southwest London doesn’t know how lucky it really is Menus may look like an innocuous list of dishes and prices to most people. But, unless they’ve been written on the fly by a sleep-deprived proprietor teetering on the edge of alcoholism, they can be a far more calculated, insidious instrument designed to subtly serve the … Continue reading

Holborn Dining Room review – the Instagram pie phenomenon
★★★★☆ / British

Holborn Dining Room review – the Instagram pie phenomenon

Aye for pie with an eye for pie One should never, ever underestimate the importance of how food looks. Attractive-looking food not only influences how we perceive its taste, but can get otherwise disinterested punters in through the door in the first place. This placebo-like effect can be seen in the social media hubbub surrounding Holborn Dining Room. This previously … Continue reading

Rick Stein Barnes review – celebrity chef serves the only seafood in the village
★★★☆☆ / Seafood

Rick Stein Barnes review – celebrity chef serves the only seafood in the village

TV CV only gets you oh so far I have little time for most TV celebrity chefs, but I’ll usually make an exception for Rick Stein. His genteel avuncular charm, childlike wonder and boundless yet measured enthusiasm make him far more watchable than the majority of his arse-clenchingly irritating peers. The big man naturally doesn’t cook in … Continue reading

Bukowski Grill Soho review – bandwagon burgers and barbecue
★★☆☆☆ / Barbecue/BBQ / Burgers

Bukowski Grill Soho review – bandwagon burgers and barbecue

A waste of Soho real estate I haven’t heard the name Bukowski Grill in years – not since my round up of London’s best non-chain burgers. The Shoreditch branch of Bukowski fared poorly in those burger stakes, so it was no surprise when superior burger purveyors expanded far more rapidly across the city with Byron and Honest Burger … Continue reading