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Aug 17, 2012 06:15 AM

Reasonable restaurants near London, Aldwych?

I'm looking for restaurants within a 10-15 minute walk of Aldwych, where you can eat decently for less than 30 pounds a head, all in (so that figure would include 2 courses, wine and service). Any suggestions?

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  1. The Opera Tavern is excellent, just off Aldwych. You are also very close to Covent Garden so could try Great Queen St gastropub, Moti Mahal for Indian, da Polpo, Mishkins, or the Delauney is right on Aldwych although you might be hard pressed to get out of there for £30 including booze.

    1. There's a branch of Cote right there... I've seen a lot of celebrities eating at lunchtime, so it can't be all bad. The prices are fairly reasonable.

      1. I love the india club which is next door to somerset house - you have to bring your own wine and its fairly rough and ready. But amazing unchanged atmosphere - food ok - stick to vegetarian and you'll be ok.

        6 Replies
        1. re: bleep75

          Thanks for the suggestions. I'm looking for a to take work visitors, so it needs to be reasonably smart. Previously, these dinners have been at Cote, so you've got the price range spot on. But my experience of Cote (in Highgate, not the Strand branch) is that it's a bit meh. I was hoping I could do better for the money. I'm surprised no-one suggested 28-50 on Fetter Lane. Is that just an over-sight, or do you think we'd be unlikely to get out of there for £30 a head?

          1. re: goldilocks76

            28-50, Great Queen Street and the Delaunay are all great in different ways.

            28-50 is a relaxed atmosphere with fantastic wines in a quaint cellar. Great Queen Street is a classy English atmosphere with a smart gastropub feel and the Delaunay is extremely smart and popular.

            I'd say that two courses and a glass of house wine per person plus service and you might squeeze out of 28-50 or GQS for £30pp but not if anyone ordered a steak or wanted more than a single glass of wine or someone wanted dessert. The Delaunay would only work if you ordered at the very cheap end of the menu so I would rule that out.

            I'm racking my brains for somewhere cheaper for you that I can recommend but other than the Cote-type chain places I'm struggling a bit with the radius.

            1. re: goldilocks76

              Actually the other thought that comes to mind is whether you are eating at lunchtime or pre-theatre (usually seated no later than 630pm).

              If you are eating at those times then it opens a number of options such as the excellent menu at steak restaurant Hawksmoor Seven Dials or the superb value pre-theatre menu at Les Deux Salons which is an absolutely beautiful venue. I suppose the problem is whether it would be awkward indicating that you are ordering off the set menu.

              1. re: ManInTransit

                No, it'll be too late for pre-theatre. All the recommendations above sound like great places to eat, but you have confirmed my suspicion that 28-50 and GQS would be best for our party, if we think we can come in under budget. (A lot of the early suggestions are places with a tapas format, that seems to be very trendy at the moment, and I'm not sure that tapas would be appropriate for the company.)

                1. re: goldilocks76

                  Went to 28-50 a couple of times, and enjoyed it, but the wine list proved too much of a temptation. Also, the acoustics are pretty bad and it's quite loud. When sitting at the large round tables, it was impossible to converse with the person opposite. Going to try Great Queen Street next time.

                  I noticed that there is a Canteen on Wellington St. I went to the original Canteen, on the South Bank, relatively soon after it opened and received rave reviews. My memory is that it was perfectly nice. Does anyone know what it and the rest of the chain, especially the Wellington St branch, are like now?

                  1. re: goldilocks76

                    I found Great Queen Street to be extremely noisy and dark, so pretty hard to hold a conversation. The food was good enough to be worth it, though. It's a much more comfortable place at lunchtime when there's still daylight and it's not as loud.

                    Canteen is average. I'm not a fan of the atmosphere but I haven't tried the Wellington Street branch - I've been to the one at Canary Wharf, Spitalfields, and South Bank and I have to say the CW branch is the best. It's more relaxed and feels more like an actual restaurant than a refectory. The food isn't anything special; I remember having afternoon tea there and that was quite good value - the rest of the menu wasn't bad, but it also wasn't good enough to merit a return visit. Unless it's one of those where you have to opt for the best of the surrounding areas.