Shu Xiangge Chinatown review – plenty of brains and heart, just not always in the right places
★★★☆☆ / Chinese / Chinese Noodles / Sichuanese

Shu Xiangge Chinatown review – plenty of brains and heart, just not always in the right places

Unapologetically Sichuanese hotpot Shuang Shuang, the Chinese hotpot restaurant married to a conveyor belt, befuddled many of its Chinatown neighbours when it first opened. Comparatively expensive with somewhat unadventurous ingredients, a bit too much logistical fuss on your part and a relative lack of large communal pots for group dining, it broke all the Chinatown … Continue reading

Gilly’s Fry Bar review – the chippy that wants to be a tempura restaurant
★★☆☆☆ / British / Eclectic

Gilly’s Fry Bar review – the chippy that wants to be a tempura restaurant

Finsbury Park doesn’t need more battered fried food I have a confession to make. It’s a deeply unpopular, long-held opinion that will not endear me to many of you. It’ll be even more controversial than the time I disparaged chicken, dismissing it as a soulless meat fit only for children and invalids. I don’t like … Continue reading

Coal Rooms Peckham review – a train station restaurant that isn’t a dreary chain
★★★☆☆ / Eclectic / Steak/chophouse

Coal Rooms Peckham review – a train station restaurant that isn’t a dreary chain

Plus a beast of a bacon sandwich Salvaging, reusing and repurposing old fittings and furnishings to adorn new restaurants is nothing new; it’s been an ongoing trend in the English-speaking world for at least a decade, if not more. Renovating old buildings, while judiciously paying homage to their original purpose, has received less attention but … Continue reading

Miss P’s Barbecue review – proper BBQ comes to Croydon
★★★★☆ / Barbecue/BBQ

Miss P’s Barbecue review – proper BBQ comes to Croydon

Disclosure: I backed this restaurant’s crowdfunding effort on Kickstarter (in the range of £50-£100). Update 17/10/17 – corrected details about the pulled pork and fixed some typos. Unlike some other reviewers, I’m not obsessively critical of the famed Michelin Guide (not that either gives a fig about what I think). While it certainly has its … Continue reading

Old Tree Daiwan Bee review – the other Taiwanese restaurant on Rupert Street
★★★☆☆ / Chinese / Taiwanese

Old Tree Daiwan Bee review – the other Taiwanese restaurant on Rupert Street

Xu’s cheaper and more homely neighbour By accident or design, the sumptuously superlative Xu isn’t the only Taiwanese restaurant on Rupert Street. The West End’s most unlikely restaurant side street is also home to Old Tree Daiwan Bee. This oddly-named Taiwanese restaurant originally started out on a site in Golder’s Green and must be one … Continue reading

Plaquemine Lock review – Creole and Cajun pub food on the Regent’s Canal
American / ★★★☆☆ / Gastropub

Plaquemine Lock review – Creole and Cajun pub food on the Regent’s Canal

The gastropub cousin to Bocca di Lupo Most new restaurants launch in a blaze of publicity glory with press releases spamming inboxes, repetitively woolly social media chatter, oversubscribed launch parties, a Ryanair-style rush for reservations and fawning coverage from all the usual suspects. Plaquemine Lock, the new gastropub from one of the bods behind Soho’s … Continue reading

BBQ Whisky Beer at the Grey Horse Kingston review – barbecue pub residency returns
★★★☆☆ / Barbecue/BBQ

BBQ Whisky Beer at the Grey Horse Kingston review – barbecue pub residency returns

But not necessarily for the better Update: 16/11/2016 – BBQ Whisky Beer have apparently rebranded themselves as Smok’d. The amusingly named BBQ Whisky Beer was one of the best barbecue eateries in my original barbecue group test and it continued to impress on subsequent visits. After decamping to the Kentish hinterland for a spell, BBQ … Continue reading