eating out with abby
another quarter, another update on my eating-out experiences...
over the past three months i've eaten at ten new places, three of which i would be particularly keen to return to - you don't bring me flowers, the hither green cafe (fabulous old-fashioned sandwiches washed down with a pot of tea), magdalen (modern british grub with excellent service) and barrafina (impeccably fresh and delicious tapas).
i also had the opportunity to revisit some old favourites - chiang mai in oxford (fresh tasting thai food which is still the benchmark for much of the thai food i eat), hummus bros (cheap and cheerful but definitely not worthy) and two local places, the indian dining club (freshly flavoured, light indian food) and domali (which serves the best veggie breakfast in my patch of london town).
if you've been eating in the same places as me, let me know what you think - it's always great to compare views!
sw9, brixton - this brixton bar always provides a friendly welcome. today was the first time i've eaten here and my cooked breakfast (served until 3pm everyday) was fabulous.
nobu london, park lane - this was my first visit to nobu and probably my last as, for the money, it's just not special enough. however, there were some superb dishes - yellowtail sashimi with jalapeno which packed a chilli punch, and beautifully tender peruvian-style spicy tea smoked lamb cutlets.
you don't bring me flowers, hither green - fabulus doorstop sandwiches, we both had ham with salad and a fabulous sweet onion chutney on beautifully flavoursome artisan bread. this cute neighbourhood cafe (just by the station), which is also a flower shop, is definitely worth a visit.
eco, clapham - when i first moved to london having just graduated, this was the epitome of glamorous pizza dining. over 10 years later the decor is the same and the thin-crust pizzas are just as good. i'm a little less tolerant of the loud pumping music these days though...
chez gerard, south bank
paul, south kensington - this was just a sandwich lunch but, as ever, i was reminded just how good their bread is.
hummus bros, west end - this little restaurant provides punters with a bowl of fresh hummus, served with various toppings (i had gently spiced beef and a little tub of chopped chilli) and fresh fluffy pita breads. this is one of my favourite lunch spots when i'm in the area. try their homemade mint & ginger lemonade.
magdalen, london bridge - fabulous!
pizza express, westminster
shipps tearooms, borough market - overpriced (£7.50 for two scones, jam and clotted cream plus a pot of tea) but very lovely cream tea.
the little bay, farringdon - cheap and cheerful but very erratic service.
tas ev, waterloo - the tas restaurants are old favourites of mine. their light fresh turkish food, from a large menu which will please vegetarians and carnivores alike, is served at good prices and in venues suitable for large groups, all of which makes tas a winner. i do love eating at tas and have done for almost ten years!
gazette, wandsworth - i still like this little french restaurant, even if the location is less than ideal.
ping pong, waterloo - dim sum and cocktails. or pretty tea which flowers when hot water is poured on it.the prefect place for a girlie night out. good value too.
hummus bros, soho - two visits in as many months, what a treat. tonight's hummus was topped with mexican chilli, nacho crisps and grated cheese. very yummy.
domali, crystal palace - domali is a fabulous local cafe whose mushroom pate i adore. served with lightly toasted pieces of crusty bread and washed down with a carrot, apple and celery detox juice, a visit to domali is the perfect way to start the weekend and stave off friday night's hangover.
busaba, west end
pizza express, west end - i need to stop going to pizza express - their pizzas are always cold when served. which i always forget until it happens again!
chiang mai kitchen, oxford - an old favourite from my university days (it was the default choice of destination whenever mum & dad came to visit) which is still producing delicious fresh-tasting food.
ping pong, west end
barrafina, soho - i felt like i'd died and gone to heaven. a new favourite.
thames tandoori, waterloo - a nice traditional indian restaurant opposite waterloo station. i loved their dal but wouldn't order the fish curry again - it uses dried fish which isn't to my taste.
angel curry centre, islington - a cheap and cheerful byo restaurant.
mem saab, nottingham - my third indian in four days - i'm feeling full! delicious food served in huge portions (particularly the starters) in a swanky setting.
baltic, waterloo - the food served at this polish restaurant and vodka bar has never wowed me but i do like the bar (good cocktails) and the amazing amber fibre optic chandelier. it's not always about the food.
the mansion, gipsy hill - the pub is under new management. the result is a less interesting wine list and overly fiddly food. and no burgers, which was why i called in! hopefully the menu is only temporary and will settle in.
indian dining club, gipsy hill
fat delicatessen, balham - an old favourite provides a relaxed setting and delicious tapas. great wine too.
petersham nurseries, richmond - a long awaited visit!
michael moore, marylebone - a repeat visit at lunchtime to take advantage of a special offer. lovely food but sadly no vegetarian option so i had to eat a la carte (i wasn't in the mood for meat or fish). while i was pleased to receive a complementary amuse bouche to nibble on while david had his starter, i would expect a vegetarian option to be provided when requested.
previous eating out: