French

Cabotte: Magical Musar moment

Cabotte: Magical Musar moment

Where better to host an evening of tasting wines from the iconic yet cult vineyard Chateau Musar than at Cabotte? Named after the small huts that Burgundian winegrowers have within their vineyards, Cabotte is a sophisticated venue based almost opposite the City’s Guildhall. Its culinary emphasis is on modern French food with some knowingly British influences, while the wine bias is, unsurprisingly, distinctly Burgundian.

Sketch: Top of its league

Sketch: Top of its league

The title says it all. Sketch may have been open since 2003 but it deservedly remains one of the best fine dining locations in London, its two Michelin stars thoroughly merited. A meal in its Lecture Room & Library was my culinary highlight of 2018, and a return visit there on a recent Saturday night reinforced how Sketch could also be in contention for the 2019 award.

The Wallace Restaurant: Artful

The Wallace Restaurant: Artful

Walk two blocks north of Bond Street underground station and you will encounter one of London’s best-kept artistic secrets – the Wallace Collection. Located on Manchester Square, it houses an extensive collection of fine and decorative arts, and is free for anyone to visit. If this were not reason enough to visit, then the restaurant too is worth checking out…

Pied à Terre: Not quite the complete package

Pied à Terre: Not quite the complete package

Restaurants with Michelin stars know what they’re doing, right? Especially those that have held at least one since 1993. You would assume so. We, however, encountered one of our least promising starts to a restaurant visit at Pied à Terre. Fortunately, things improved from there. Overall, the experience was positively memorable, if more so for the ambience than the food…

The Greenhouse: More stars on the horizon?

The Greenhouse: More stars on the horizon?

Esteemed London eatery The Greenhouse has retained two Michelin stars since 2004 – no mean feat. It now has a new chef, and with this, the ambition to add a third star to its collection. Based on a recent weeknight visit, it may well get there before not too long…

Les 110 de Taillevent: It’s a respect thing

Dining at Les 110 is an experience for grown-ups. The London sibling of the two Michelin-starred Paris original is housed in a fine yet somewhat austere Georgian building on Cavendish Square. The venue imbues a sense of expectation, but also one of reverence. Full marks for the food and its pricing; less praise for the service and overall ambience…

Sketch – The Lecture Room & Library: Not just a meal, but an experience

Sketch – The Lecture Room & Library: Not just a meal, but an experience

Fifteen years is a long time, particularly for a restaurant in London. Yet, since 2003, Sketch has remained a unique venue, a cavern of opulence and decadence, which also serves exceptionally good food. It is no mean feat for Sketch still to be almost as trendy now as when it opened and the fact that it is only one of nine locations in London to hold two Michelin stars speaks to the quality of its offering. Diners should be prepared for an experience.

Le Boudin Blanc: An unwelcome step back in time

The last time is visited Le Boudin Blanc was a decade ago. It felt dated then, and even more so now. Clearly the place must be doing something right since it was packed when I visited on a recent weekday lunchtime, but to my mind the place demonstrates almost everything that is bad about restaurant culture.

Mere: A top experience (November 2017)

A recent trip to Mere impressed highly. The three members of our party, who dined there midweek, are all sceptics by nature and try as we did to identify shortcomings, we struggled. From beginning to end, the experience is about understated excellence with high attention to detail.

La Petite Maison: Looking good (June 2017)

La Petite Maison: Looking good (June 2017)

Even when the weather is grey outside, it still feels like the sun is shining in La Petite Maison. On this occasion, as on every other when I have visited, the place was packed, the atmosphere buzzing and everyone seemed to be enjoying what can only be described as top-quality, flawlessly executed food – albeit at a price.

Comptoir Café & Wine: French culture comes to Mayfair (May 2017)

The French do it so well. Unlike the Brits, across the Channel, the idea of the casual all-day establishment where customers can be as at home with their coffee and croissant in the mornings as with their glass of wine later is already well-established. The good news is that Comptoir, the latest offering from Xavier Rousset’s expanding empire, brings the concept to Mayfair – and does it exceptionally well

Clipstone: It’s all about choice (September 2016)

It is possible to feel slightly dizzy from the constant rush of new restaurants opening their doors to the public in London. Tyranny of choice sometimes spring to mind. However, based on the success of Portland, which I thoroughly loved when it opened last year (and won a deserved Michelin star), Clipstone definitely merited a visit.