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Restaurant Picks for June Trip to London

Hi all --

I'll be in London for 4 days in June and have spent the past few weeks coming up with a list of restaurants to check out. I've come up with my list based on Time Out London, GOOP, Yelp and some Chowhound UK trolling.

I would love it if you'd take a look at my picks below and let me know if anything is a waste of time (or money), if I should bump up anything on my "back up" list or if certain places are best visited at lunch or dinner.

I'm visiting from Toronto so we have a lot of "multi-cultural" foods. I'm an adventurous eater who has no problems with offal etc. I'm hoping to get my share of British cuisine and sampling some other standouts.

The one thing I'm missing are good bakeries or chocolate/candy shops where I can pick up some treats!

Here's my list

LUNCH
Fish Club
Hache
Arbutus
Bocca di Lupo

DINNER
Dishoom
Moro
North Sea Fish
Pizza East

BACKUPS
Hereford Road
La Famiglia
Made In Italy
Taqueria
Cha Cha Moon

Thanks!

WON
http://whatsonmyplate.net

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Hereford Road
3 Hereford Road, London W2 4AB, GB

Bocca di Lupo
12 Archer St, London, England W1D 7, GB

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  1. i think you should troll chowhound some more. if you're after indian food, for example, you'll do much better with lunch at quilon or the bombay brasserie (weekends only) than you will at dishoom.

    and you haven't got st.john on your list!

    2 Replies
    1. re: howler

      Thanks for weighing in. I'll definitely look at the other Indian options.

      I considered St John initially because everyone RAVES about it. However, looking at the sample menu at their site didn't excite me whatsoever.

      WON

      1. re: wontonfm

        Their pared-down style of menu writing isn't particularly enticing, imo, but what's on the plate is a lot better!

    2. Dishoom is a fun place, but I'd stick with it for lunch rather than dinner. And I'd avoid their naan, which almost everyone thinks is not the best, including me. If you'd like some of the wonderful Indian food here, Quilon, as howler pointed out is very good as are Amaya, Cinnamon Club (not everyone's favorite, but I enjoyed it), Benares etc.

      P.S. I still miss Maury. :-)

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      Quilon
      41 Buckingham Gate, London, Greater London SW1E 6, GB

      The Cinnamon Club
      The Old Westminster Library, 30-32 Great Smith Street, London SW1P 3BU, GB

      1. Your list is very eclectic! I'm a bit puzzled about some of the choices, I will admit. Hache for example, is just a small chain burger restaurant. There are more interesting places to go if you have limited time. Fish Club is in Battersea - are you going to be in the area anyway? I'm not convinced it merits a special trip. Similarly with Pizza East.

        I would move Dishoom onto your lunch list, as Zuriga says, and possibly Hereford Road. I would also consider the Bull & Last, which is an excellent gastropub in Hampstead. I personally prefer Wild Honey to Arbutus (they are run by the same people) but both are a good choice. If you want to be adventurous, consider heading out to Bethnal Green to Viajante or The Corner Room (check this board for details) for Mendes' experimental food. If St John is too much for you, have a look at St John Bread and Wine or even Henderson's new place, which is very centrally located near Leicester Square.

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        Hereford Road
        3 Hereford Road, London W2 4AB, GB

        St Johns Restaurant
        24 Sir Thomas Street, Liverpool L1 6JB, GB

        1. For treats, it's worth a trip to Laudree in covent garden for the delicious macarons, if you're a fan. William Curley (http://www.williamcurley.co.uk/engine...) or Paul A Young (http://www.paulayoung.co.uk/shops/) would be my picks for posh chocolates

          2 Replies
          1. re: uniqueusername

            I think the Pierre Hermes macarons at Selfridge's are also delicious. There's also a Laduree shop in the Burlington Arcade near Piccadilly if that's more convenient.

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            Laduree
            Burlington Arcade, London, Greater London W1J 0, GB

            1. re: zuriga1

              Thanks! Pierre Herme and Laduree were already on my list (love them from my Paris days). Will have to investigate the chocolate shops.

              WON

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              Laduree
              Burlington Arcade, London, Greater London W1J 0, GB

          2. Say no to Hereford Road. I have been twice and neither time impressed. St. John is very good, if you are an adventurous eater. William Curley chocolates are wonderful.

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            Hereford Road
            3 Hereford Road, London W2 4AB, GB

            St. John
            26 St John Street, London EC1M 4AY, GB

            3 Replies
            1. re: erincharles

              I would replace it with Harwood Arms or Bull & Last.

              1. re: erincharles

                Perhaps I am in a minority, but I like Hereford Road. I like the combinations, the portion sizes and the friendly staff. It's near my London office so I always visit when I'm over. I would put it on a par in style with St John Bread and Wine.

                Harwood Arms is good but I'm not sure why it generates such a rabid following here - having been a couple of times, and enjoyed it, I wouldn't cross London again for it. And if that's what you need for a michelin star, then lots of other places should feel shortchanged. That said, looking at the OPs list, I would probably put a more gastropub venue on it as it is a particularly London style of dining

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                Hereford Road
                3 Hereford Road, London W2 4AB, GB

                1. re: mr_gimlet

                  We trekked across London to eat at Harwood Arms, and I feel it was worth the trip. As promised, the food featured fresh, seasonal ingredients, and both my husband and I enjoyed our fish main courses; he loved his sea bream, and I thought my poached cod with cauliflower and mushrooms was even better, with a good mix of flavors and textures. Service was also notable in a positive way: casual, knowledgeable, and friendly all at once.

                  We also made a point of seeking out Indian food while in London. For dinner, we went to Moti Mahal as we were intrigued by the vegetarian tasting menu. It turned out to be flavorful, varied, and interesting. I'd describe it as more elegant than spicy (I was concerned at first that the flavors would be too timid), although the sampling we had of the main courses lead me to believe that these are spicier than the starters. We ate Indian food for lunch on another day, choosing Delhi Grill, a very casual spot at Chapel Market in Islington. I'd recommend this one, too.

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                  Moti Mahal
                  45 Great Queen Street, London WC2B 5AA, GB