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London - recent experiences?


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#1 Aaron T

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 04:54 PM

I'm off to London in a week for a business trip. I haven't eaten at any/many good restaurants in London so whether its new or old, it will be new to me. The only place I ate at that was good was Benares.

Based on old threads I booked dinners at J. Sheekey and St. John. I think I will likely have another 2 dinner slots to fill, on a Monday and Friday evenings. Any thoughts as to good options? I won't be bringing a suit/tie, so no place overly formal that would be problematic to go to in slacks and a dress shirt. Type of cuisine would be something typically British or something I can't get easily say in SF or LA. Places mentioned on this board in the past are Tayaab's, the River Cafe. Any gastropubs? My office is near Victoria and I will be staying near Piccadilly so someplace not obscenely far away is optimal... Is any game in season?

BTW - what attire is acceptable at Sheekey and St. John? Their websites say that they do not have dress codes.

Considering recent discussions apologies for the resemblance this post may have to CH posts. laugh.gif
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#2 Daisy

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 05:06 PM

River Cafe might just be my favorite London restaurant but it's far,far away from everywhere unless you happen to be in Hammersmith. And the prices are a bit swoon-inducing. I was there in February and dinner for two was over $300 and we were not drinking expensive wine. I also went to Sheekey, which I love, on this trip and my companion was wearing his standard uniform of khakis, polo shirt, blue blazer. You'll be fine and comfortable with a sports coat.


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#3 Gavin

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 05:19 PM

The (rather small) group of London/UK members should be able to help out here. Couple of immediate suggestions, take a look at Slapsie's blog Dos Hermanos. I usually respect the brothers' opinion on most things restaurant.

Not sure that there is any game in season at the moment (apart from quail which is never out). It's the time of year where we let the game make baby game for the new season.
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#4 Daisy

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 05:22 PM

QUOTE(Gavin @ Jun 5 2009, 01:19 PM) View Post
The (rather small) group of London/UK members should be able to help out here. Couple of immediate suggestions, take a look at Slapsie's blog Dos Hermanos. I usually respect the brothers' opinion on most things restaurant.

Not sure that there is any game in season at the moment (apart from quail which is never out). It's the time of year where we let the game make baby game for the new season.

Dos Hermanos led me to the upstairs bar at Rules which I loved.

And Gavin, your pub suggestions were great.
Sardines aren't for sissies.---Frank Bruni
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The mistake one makes is to react to what people post rather than to what they mean.---Dr. Johnson
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I want to be the girl with the most cake.

#5 Anthony Bonner

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 05:30 PM

At the risk of stating the obvious - I always send friends who ask this question to Dos Hermanos' blog.

My thoughts are a bit out date as its been almost 4 years since I moved home and I haven't been since '07 but...

I too like the River Cafe. Was quite fond of the Anchor & Hope (gastropub) but you can't book there + it is a bit like St John.

Magdalen is def a place on my list for my next trip back (which has ended up being much delayed)

St. John is pretty casual. I would wear nice jeans there and not feel out of place in the least. In light of other conversations around here - it is def a place where you can and will order something that can be an absolute bomb and follow that up with something awesome. Bit of a luck of the draw.

Tayyab's is pretty awesome to an American I think.

ETA - What kind of a person reads what other people have already said before posting.
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#6 g.johnson

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 05:39 PM

QUOTE(Aaron T @ Jun 5 2009, 12:54 PM) View Post
Type of cuisine would be something typically British or something I can't get easily say in SF or LA.

What was the Turkish place in Islington that Slapsie was wont to rave about? Is it still good?

I'd recommend Hakkasan but it might seem a bit ordinary to a left coaster.
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#7 Anthony Bonner

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 05:40 PM

QUOTE(g.johnson @ Jun 5 2009, 01:39 PM) View Post
QUOTE(Aaron T @ Jun 5 2009, 12:54 PM) View Post
Type of cuisine would be something typically British or something I can't get easily say in SF or LA.

What was the Turkish place in Islington that Slapsie was wont to rave about? Is it still good?

I'd recommend Hakkasan but it might seem a bit ordinary to a left coaster.

Angel Mangal - closed.

ETA - one of the first places I checked out solely on the basis of one persons chowhound postings.

I figured "I love the wenlock arms, this guy loves the wenlock arms and he appears literate. Lets give it a shot"
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#8 g.johnson

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 05:46 PM

That's the one. There was another good one in Islington called, IIRC, Gallipoli. Turkish is something Aaron might look out for, I think.
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#9 Sneakeater

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 06:10 PM

QUOTE(Anthony Bonner @ Jun 5 2009, 05:30 PM) View Post
St. John is pretty casual. I would wear nice jeans there and not feel out of place in the least. In light of other conversations around here - it is def a place where you can and will order something that can be an absolute bomb and follow that up with something awesome. Bit of a luck of the draw.


Oh, so what should I order?
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#10 g.johnson

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 06:12 PM

QUOTE(Sneakeater @ Jun 5 2009, 02:10 PM) View Post
QUOTE(Anthony Bonner @ Jun 5 2009, 05:30 PM) View Post
St. John is pretty casual. I would wear nice jeans there and not feel out of place in the least. In light of other conversations around here - it is def a place where you can and will order something that can be an absolute bomb and follow that up with something awesome. Bit of a luck of the draw.


Oh, so what should I order?

That's not how it works. You tell us what you ordered and that it wasn't any good. Then we tell you what to order.
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#11 Sneakeater

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 06:14 PM

That's more like it.

Is this an appropriate thread to say what a surprise it was to see SM smiling out at me (maybe he wasn't smiling) from one of the subway giveaway newspapers yesterday?
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#12 Anthony Bonner

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 06:47 PM

QUOTE(Sneakeater @ Jun 5 2009, 02:10 PM) View Post
QUOTE(Anthony Bonner @ Jun 5 2009, 05:30 PM) View Post
St. John is pretty casual. I would wear nice jeans there and not feel out of place in the least. In light of other conversations around here - it is def a place where you can and will order something that can be an absolute bomb and follow that up with something awesome. Bit of a luck of the draw.


Oh, so what should I order?

Oh come on. You know that's not what I was saying.
Why not mayo?

#13 Sneakeater

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 06:49 PM

OF COURSE I know that's not what you were saying.
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#14 Suzanne F

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 07:13 PM

If they have them, order the sprout leaves at St. John. Big honking things, wonderfully sweet and barely cabbagey. No, I'm not kidding. smile.gif We were very, very happy with the vegetables. Oh, and the dress was relatively casual. This was November 2007, I doubt that's changed.

And if you go to Tayyab, you'll have lots of money left for other, fancier places.

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#15 Slapsie Maxie

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Posted 05 June 2009 - 08:35 PM

Hi A

good to see you the other day

Let me know if your schedule allows me join you for supper somewhere when you are here

Opposite St J is a great wine bar called Vinoteca, well worth stopping in for a pre- St J drink

Best Okabasi right now is Anatolia in Hackney

There is precious little in Pimlico although you do have Seafresh and The laughing Halibut two rather good chippies in that area

Best gastros IMHO are The Bull & Last in Highgate and The Harwood Arms in Fulham

Slapsie