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giaconda dining room? [London]

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Has anyone been there recently? I ask as I'm arranging a christmas dinner (not turkey though) for friends and it's a toss up between the giaconda or hereford road.

thanks in advance!

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  1. Dined at Giaconda last month - flawless food. Wonderful brill special. One of the most enjoyable meals I've had all year, and all the more so for not being an over-hyped / new / overly flashy place. Location is good too - very central and ideal if you're doing drinks before or after.

    I haven't been to Hereford Road though - the menu has never inspired me enough to head west and it seems to get mixed reviews.

    1 Reply
    1. re: DollyDagger

      Re: Giaconda - How many friends? Always found it flawless eating their alone or with one other, but I know a friend who went with a party of five and found it patchy. I've been twice to Hereford road, once with two others, once with a party of eight or so, and it was again much better as a small party. Would it perhaps be better to go to somewhere like Bread & Wine or Great Queen Street, which lean towards large shared feasting dishes?

    2. I am probably one of the few dissenting voices when it comes to Giaconda. Whilst the food is OK at the price point, we though overall it was average French bistro food, with some quite obvious shortcuts in the cooking, that IMO compromised the dishes (compare it to Terroirs for example). However, it is fun, packed and bustling, and I can see it having a great festive atmosphere. One recommendation is to take your own glasses, the party next to us did and therefore didn't have to drink wine from dodgy house glasses (I think they bought their own wine as well).

      I like Hereford Road and IMO the cooking is a few notches above Giaconda, the price point is higher and this is probably what allows them to deliver better quality food. The room is a lot bigger, much more space, but possibly less atmosphere for a celebration.

      2 Replies
      1. re: PhilD

        I prefer Hereford Road too, but the price range of Hereford Road and Giaconda Dining Rooms are nearly the same. HR's starters are from £4-8.50, GCD from £6-7. HR's mains from £11-15, with specials like Grouse (£22) or servings of certain dishes for 2 at £28. GCD's mains are £11-14.50 with a few servings for 2 also at £28. Desserts are £5.50-6 (GCD) and £5.50 (HR, except for a £10 cheese plate).

        1. re: limster

          There will be 9 of us in total, so fitting into Giaconda is a bit of a squeeze I think.

          Any other suggestions for a similar priced dinner?