Hush, Teca, The Phoenix (London)
I understand that the man behind the Walnut Tree Inn now has some input in The Phoenix (Lower Richmond Road). Has anyone been?
Two other restaurants I am thinking of trying (actually quite close to each other off Bond Street) are Hush and Teca. Any comments on either appreciated.
Not been to the London places (yet) visited the Walnut Tree Inn last autumn having wanted to try it for a long time.
Confess to being a bit underwhelmed. I remember the excellent bread. I remember a huge slice of crab tart which was chunky and nicely eggy but far too salty.And I remember a combination of Duck and Smoked Eel which just didn't seem to work very well. The rest was 'nice enough'. As indeed was the setting and service.
Were this my local eaterie, I'd be ecstatic. As a substantial detour or a destination, much less so.
Still, if you think life's disappointing as a Welsh food commentator, just try supporting the rugby team for thirty years....
re: Gareth Williams
Thw Walnut Tree is no longer in the hands of Franco Taruschio, whose constant presence in the kitchen made it Elizabeth David's favorite British restaurant -- and certainly one of mine. There were a very few years when a Danish friend of ours maintained a magnificent B&B just a few miles away. Life was heaven.
I went to Teca about 4-5 months ago or so. Was pretty underwhelming. My fav Italian in London (at the moment) is Il Convivio at 143 Ebury Street. Just ate today at Alloro on Dover Street and it was quite good. Both have excellent wine lists - basically 100% Italian (except for the odd sparkler here and there). I'd still favour Il Convivio for atmosphere, price and innovative food preparation over Alloro but both offered very nice meals.
The Bucks Belly
I was at The Phoenix last week. This has always been a very, very good local restaurant serving high quality food in good looking, casual surroundings, a terrace and very good staff. The food was 'modern British' but very good of its kind.
Now with Mr Walnut Tree involved the ambience and service remain just as good but the food now has a different and interesting italian theme to the menu - although not exclusively so. It is one of those menu's where you fancy every dish. I tried the smoked duck (smoked with seaweed?) to start which was excellent as were the breads. I then had the recommended 'historical super lasagne' (I forget the name)which is supposed to be a signature dish made with chicken livers etc. I was a bit underwhelmed. It was tasty enough if a bit heavy on the the pasta to sauce ratio, but not orgasmic.
Afters and cheeses and coffees all good. This is a great local restaurant that has got even better, and if you are around SW3-SW13 definitely worth a visit, but probably not worth treking across town for.