20140729-102902-37742710.jpg July 29

Rivea. Not riveting

They didn’t play The Girl from Ipanema, but they might as well have done. Hotel muzak is alive and well. Bulgari (or, according to my autocorrect, Vulgari – it knows) is that wildly expensive jewellery brand, owned by LVMH which now gives its name to an hotel. Expanding the branding.

20140725-215013-78613219.jpg July 26

Mayfields. Heaven in Hackney.

It’s a long way from anywhere that isn’t in Hackney, this restaurant. Fortunately, I was most of the way there, as I’d had to go and sit in a design studio in Shoreditch, for most of the afternoon, finishing off a pitch document.After proof-reading for four hours, I felt that I deserved. The taxi driver […]

20140725-102635-37595337.jpg July 25

Cecconi’s. A waiting game.

I was once summoned to Cecconi’s by a client, who used to run his company from here over breakfast. He had his own table. Obviously. It reminded me of a story told by C about his father, sitting in a steakhouse in Chicago. He noticed  an elderly gentleman sat alone at a large table with […]

20140720-165143-60703487.jpg July 20

N.A.C. Qu’est-ce que c’est?

I kept getting the name wrong, before I worked out that it stood for North Audley Cantine. Not canteen, nor cantina, just cantine. It’s French. I’d been here when it opened and we were the only people eating. Then it was all sharing plates and I remember it being a little confusing; they just seemed […]

20140718-182834-66514660.jpg July 20

Polpo Notting Hill. Yummy, mummy.

I haven’t been to the original Soho Polpo. Like a foodie version of too posh to push, I’m just too old to stand in line. Not to mention impatient. And even though I am generally to be found right up there on my high horse about the no booking thing, I thought that it might […]

20140709-082653-30413299.jpg July 09

Lyle’s. Golden.

It seems to rain every time I travel East to eat. I don’t know what it is, maybe the weather is trying to tell me something i.e. I am out of my natural habitat. I worked in the City for 10 years. It felt like a life sentence. My heart still sinks when I get […]

20140704-171200-61920068.jpg July 02

Marianne. Middling.

When I was a baby lawyer,  I entertained a fantasy that I would do law for about ten years, then open up a little neighbourhood restaurant. That was before I realised how much physical work, not to mention financial risk would be involved and I don’t do risk. Less a liberation from the law and more […]

20140627-203943-74383842.jpg June 27

Marcus. Formerly formal, informally formal.

I used to go to that Marcus Wareing place in the Berkeley Hotel when it was a dead posh gaff, with its dark velvet walls and more waiters than you could shake a stick at, not that I’m in the business of shaking sticks at waiters. It was proper faine daining, with its two glittering […]

20140625-140224-50544618.jpg June 26

J. Sheekey. Caring for me.

I lay my cards on the table and hold up my hands though not at the same time, obviously. I am not generally a fan of the restaurants in the Caring stable. Don’t get me wrong, they are beautifully run, gorgeously decorated and generally consistent, but there is, to my mind, something about being under […]

20140619-194358-71038125.jpg June 20

The Hind’s Head. Heston does homespun.

I was still on holiday, albeit not actually still abroad. There were cupboards to organise, so obviously my thoughts turned to food. And the sun was shining. A country pub, I was thinking, by the river perhaps. And when I say pub I was thinking beer-serving establishment only in the loosest possible sense. A sort of Hand and […]

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