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Eating Out Gourmet restaurants
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Your guide to Gourmet Restaurants in London

If you've stayed or dined at a hotel or restaurant and you think it should be included in this guide, send your comments to info@london-visitor-guide.com
If you're a restaurateur or hotelier, email suppliers@london-visitor-guide.com


Covent Garden - L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon

One of the capital’s most impressive wining and dining propositions, L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon comprises two restaurants and Le Salon Bar (see separate review) set over three storeys. The ground floor L’Atelier is where the real action is; a slick (but very dark) Japanese-inspired red and black dining room where diners perch on stools overlooking an open kitchen. Meals are made up of a series of faultlessly executed grazing dishes that display astute and assured flavours: a plate of plump Palourdes clams stuffed with garlic & mushrooms, a deliciously decadent mini foie gras burger, and teppanyaki-grilled calf’s sweetbread studded with a bay leaf are among the highlights. Efficient staff offer menu guidance, but while L’Atelier has been applauded on almost all fronts, there is one area which receives unanimous criticism: exceptionally high prices that leave many visitors concluding that they’d ‘only return as long as someone else was paying’ – though a new set lunch menu (two/three courses for £27/£35) does offer a cheaper way in. Upstairs, La Cuisine serves three-course meals from a similar menu in a more traditional, but less appealing, setting.

As you might expect from Joel Robuchon’s name, this mid-sized & expertly chosen list is dominated by France. It’s laid out regionally, but as well as the classic French regions, the selection from the south and south west really stands out. There are also notable wines from Italy and Australia. Choice, however, is limited unless you’re prepared to spend more than £40. Best Buy White 2006 Valencay, Domaine Sebastian Vaillant, Loire Valley, France, £28. Best Buy Red 1999 Chateau Bouscasse, Madiran, France, £30.

Born in Poitiers in 1945, Joel Robuchon originally intended to join the priesthood. But family difficulties forced him to find work and at 15 he took on an apprenticeship at the Relais de Poitiers. In 1966 Robuchon became the official chef of La Tour de France, where he learnt a variety of diverse regional techniques. At 28, he became head chef at Harmony-Lafayette, overseeing 3,000 meals a day. In 1981 he launched Jamin in Paris and within three years had received three Michelin stars. In 1996 he left his Parisian restaurant, but maintained the direction of L’Atelier de Joel Robuchon in Tokyo. He opened another L’Atelier in Paris in 2003 and has since established Ateliers in Las Vegas, New York & London.
13-15 West Street WC2H 9NE Phone: 020 7010 8600 Email: info@joelrobuchon.co.uk

Covent Garden - Christopher's

It’s all class and no pretence at this swish American restaurant housed in a stunning Grade-II listed Victorian building. Excellent views towards Waterloo Bridge form a pleasant backdrop in the contemporary dining room where the food offers a modern take on US classics: blackened salmon with jambalaya risotto and luscious amaretto peach Melba, say. Superb steaks are the mainstay of the menu, including great surf and turf (with Maine lobster) and an almighty 22oz prime rib chop, though more continental offerings such as perfectly rendered sea bass fillet with fennel and roasted red peppers and anchovy dressing are equally good. Polite and competent staff make good recommendations from the extensive wine list.
18 Wellington Street WC2E 7DD Phone: 020 7240 4222 Email: coventgarden@christophersgrill.com


London W1 - Ozer

Modern and upmarket, Ozer breaks all the old Turkish restaurant cliches. Deep red, curvy, marble-effect walls, a tiled floor and contemporary ceiling lighting kick things oft in style. Up front there's a buzzy bar area, while at the back the restaurant comes decked out in white tablecloths and black or red leather chairs. The atmosphere's vibrant, bustling and loud, with hard working staff. The array of menu options offer a wide, affordable range of traditional dishes, including excellent meze, as well as some more unusual offerings, and all kicked oft by complimentary houmous, olives and bread. it's straightforward but accomplished and well-presented; try a meze platter followed up by lamb kulbasti (tender fillet with oregano).
5 Langham Place, Regent St, W1B 3DG Phone: 020 7323 0505 Email: info@sofra.co.uk Wweb: www.sofra.co.uk


Charlotte Street - Passione

Its pinkish-terracotta and glass frontage seem somewhat unremarkable for a widely esteemed Italian, though the name on the awning perfectly sums up this small but big-hearted restaurant, epitomising chef-patron Gennaro Contaido's love affair with great food. Green walls are hung with food photographs, while blond-wood floors and chairs add a modern edge to close-set tables and a lively, informal atmosphere; there's an endearing neighbourhood local vibe here. ifs not difficult to see why Gennaro is a Jamie Oliver mentor, his regional Italian cooking driven by fresh, high-quality seasonal produce, herbs and simple, clean-flavoured style. Perhaps try tagliatelle with summer truffle sauce, or wild sea bass served with saute peas and broad beans and marinated samphire.
10 Charlotte St, London, W1T 2LT Phone: 020 7636 2833 Web: www.passione.co.uk


Mayfair - Pattersons

Tucked away in a tiny Mayfair street at the top end of Savile Row, Patterson's provides an elegant setting for fine dining, complemented by slick professional service. The bar area, complete with lobster and tropical fish tanks, leads to a spacious, long, narrow dining room with oak flooring, high-backed leather chairs and white walls enlivened by colourful artwork You can relax here and peruse the menu's modern approach - underpinned by a classical French theme and founded on carefully-sourced, tip-top local and organic produce. Father-and-son team Raymond and Tom produce dishes that surprise and delight with their flavour and presentation. Expect loin of lamb in filo pastry with green spring vegetables and curried crab mousseline, and perhaps a pineapple and creme fraiche sorbet millefeuille with fruit salad to finish.
4 Mill St, Mayfair, London, W1S 2AX
Phone: 020 7499 1308 Email: pattersonmayfair@btconnect.com Web: www.pattersonsrestaurant.com


London W1 - Pied A Terre

This class act continues to run on top form with some superlative and exciting cooking. The frontage is intimate and unassuming, while the sleek interior is fittingly stylish and glamorous. The decor is contemporary and oozes understated luxury, with cream suede and rosewood furniture and architectural glass combining harmoniously. There's also a bar upstairs to relax both pre- and post-meal, featuring leather seats and art by Hamilton, Blake and Hodgkin. Service is as impeccable as ever, led by excellent host David Moore. Oz born chef Shane Osborn continues to deliver his brand of stylish and creative modern French cuisine; it is sophisticated refined and brimful of class and emphatic flavours, using top
notch luxury ingredients and innovation - technically superb, it ticks all the boxes. The tantalising fixed-price repertoire of lunch, carte and tasting menu (with the option of accompanying wines) promotes an agony of choice, delivering roasted and poached loin of mid-Devon venison served with quince puree and pommes soufflé and a sauté of bacon, Savoy cabbage, and fresh chestnuts or perhaps roasted halibut with courgette and basil cream, courgette and truffle fondue, razor clams and a lemon oil emulsion, while dessert might feature a bitter-sweet chocolate tart with stout ice cream and Macadamia nut cream. A stunning range of ancillaries (canapés, amuse-bouche, breads, pre-desserts and petits fours) burst with flavour and attention to detail like everything else here, while an impressive wine list rounds off this highflyer in style.
34 Charlotte Street, London, W1T 2NH
Phone: 020 7636 1178 Email: info@pied-a-terre.co.uk Web: www.pied-a-terre.co.uk


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Great prices on hotel rooms in London!
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