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London Trip Report - December 2012

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Highlights were Amaya, Dinner, Kitchen Table and the Bull and Last.

Amaya for lunch-amazing as always. The quail intensely flavorful.

Hix Mayfair was worth missing, not bad, but not good either.

Dinner by Heston was terrific. Great atmosphere, food and service. Standouts were the meat-fruit, pork neck and tipsy cake, but everything was worthwhile.

Ishbilia was very, good, very refined Lebanese.

Moreno was good, creative Italian in a very pretty hotel setting, but did not live up to what it was trying to be, which is exceptional.

The Delaunay is now better than The Wolsely but quite similar. Nice for pre or post theate, a fun scene but just good food.

Yauatcha was heavier and i would stay with Hakkassan for upscale dim sum

Benares is great upscale Indian and a worthy successor to the Tamarind category but if you have only one, do Amaya.

Bentley's Oyster Bar & Grill is great and a great atmosphere. Like its sister Corrigans, the best smoked fish ever (especially the eel), oysters that feel like they were just plucked from the sea and great pies, both fish (or at Corrigans) Rabbit. The fried sole was also etherial.

Kitchen Table at Bubbledogs is Londons version of Brooklyn Fare. While Brooklyn is almost exclusively seafood, this is nose to tail. Excellent meal, experience and service but very rich and 12 courses long. Standouts were the crispy chicken skin with bacon jam, the scallops, duck on mashed potatoes and the cheese with a name very much like Stilton. Only 19 seats and you should not miss it.

The Bull and Last near highgate cemetery might be the best pub I have ever been to. amazing people, feel and of course fish and chips

The worst experience was new years eve at the Lecture Room at Sketch. I am truly amazed that this restaurant is related to PG's place in Paris. The food was fine, but unexciting except the cheese course. The service was the worst of any Michelin starred restaurant I have been to. We were there on New Years Eve and nothing was as it should have been. We were served the hot canapes without being given a chance to order champagne or wine, which took 30 minutes and while we waited to eat them, they were not replaced. Our wine was clearly premoxed, but they tried to sell it as fine before replacing it. Everyone in the room was having to get up to serve themselves wine and no one in the room was poured champagne before midnight. We had to ask for our dirty plates to be cleared after every course. The live entertainment was great, but played only 15 minutes in between 1 hour breaks. Repeated complaints to management brought no results. This was a thousand pound meal and for the first time in my life, I asked to have the service charge removed.

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  1. Thanks for the report Rick and what a great itinerary. I loved Kitchen Table and the Delaunay is excellent.

    I've never eaten out on New Year's Eve but that experience at Sketch sounds horrific.