Non Destinational Places in London
- Simon Majumdar
Much like Frasier and Niles, the thought of going to the sort of place where you don't even need a reservation fills me with horror and not a little disgust. This is not snobbery I hasten to add, just that London seems to be much weaker in this area than NYC ( Now that's a sentence I never thought I would use anywhere where Howler might read it )
At the take out level, London is excellent, at the mid to top range it is as good as anywhere, what I am talking about is the sort of drop in places which NY has in abundance.
In the last few weeks, I have suffered being taken to holes such as Wagamama's, Yo Sushi, Belgo all by well meaning people who wouldn't know good food if it slapped them in the chops with a wet haddock. The food seems secondary to the gimmick ( waiters dressed as monks etc. Trust me I spent two years in a monastery and if I had been served food like that I would committed many mortal sins)
There are exceptions of course. Mainly ethnic food, but I a beginning to despair a bit about having to plan a week ahead if I want anything that is not Thai/Indian/Chinese/ etc etc and there are only so many times I can take someone to Satsuma in Wardour st if we want a pre theatre meal.
Maybe I am just jaded, but if anyone has any suggestions, they would be most welcome.
MAN, i dont know whether to take a triumphantly righteous i-told-ya-so attitude or victoriously rub your blighty nose in my kensington dust. especially since i even warned you about nonsense like wagamama.
but i'm going to take the high road and not even remind you that in the 'eating capital of europe' good, casual food is hard to come by. howlers first law: if you like the restaurant, they don't deliver. howlers second law: if you love the restaurant, its three miles away whenever you get that craving. howlers third law:
the length of the rain is directly proportional to the distance of the place you need to get to for take out.
why don't you try lebanese, simon? its truly outstanding here. go to beiteddine in harriet street or al-dar on kings road. no reservations, hassle free brilliance.
How about trying the Quality Chop House in Farringdon Road. A call 15 to 20 minutes before arriving (mobile phones occassionally have their use) usually turns up a table.
The major drawback is the uncomfortable seating, obviously the "progressive working classes" had smaller or harder bums than me.