London Trip Report - April 2016

Spent a few days in London, was interested in an earlier post about Michelin Starred restaurants, and have concluded that the criteria for those awards do not necessarily equate to great food. Here’s the list, limited mostly to the City area:

Cafe Spice Namaste - celebrity chef (at least locally) cooking up updated Indian cuisine. There is a notice on the tables announcing that the restaurant is complying with the low salt initiative of the government, and encouraging folks to ask for salt if they want more. Layered salting is essential to good food IMO, and this food certainly lacked that element, so I asked for it. Better it was applied during cooking. Not to mention the healthiness or lack thereof of salt is in question.

Wright Bros. at Borough Market (various locations) - a must stop for us each time we visit. Freshest seafood in a happy environment. This is the smallest seafood tower with 12 oysters added:

Kitchen W8 - Kensington’s zip is the name of this Michelin starred eatery. On Sunday nights, you can bring your own wine with no corkage fee, which can be substantial other evenings. The service was attentive, the food was so tenderly plated that it arrived cool, and I do so love hot food. This is a brown crab and potato puree starter. Pretty, right? Room temp on arrival. And the whole dish reminded me of baby food. It came with 2 crab croquettes and some fried crisps of some sort for dipping.

Roast - also at Borough Market and also a favorite. Headed here for breakfast this time and they do a great job but for this American, the coffee service at 8 a.m. is lacking. The coffee drinks were slow in coming and refilling, but over-all this is a great place for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

Jamie Oliver’s Barbecoa - You won’t find better views than this, and the food and service were fantastic for a large group of about 12. Private area and all food was served hot and all at once. No idea how they accomplish this, but this was a fantastic meal and evening. Kudos to Mr. Oliver.


Spatchcock chicken:

Sazerac with praline bits for dessert

Marcus - another Michelin star location, totally unmemorable and outrageously expensive. Visit the venerable pub around the corner instead.

OXO - Restaurant or Brasserie, side by side eateries with amazing views of London, a celebration of the UK.

Ominino - Newish (18 months) Argentinian Steakhouse in the City - fabulous. I’m not a steak person but I ate most of that rib-eye, just perfectly done. The sides, also fantastic.

Finally, Rules. Who doesn’t love Rules. The last is a steak and kidney suet pie with a grilled oyster on top. Cheers.

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Interesting about Cafe Spice Namaste and the low salt initiative.

I’d lived in that area for quite a few years before I realised that it was there, but have been there a few times now and enjoyed it. I don’t remember the menu being explicitly low salt then so I assume it must be a new thing. I’ll have to go back and try it to see if it’s less enjoyable - although I imagine being told it’s lower salt will alter the way I perceive it

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I have it in mind that Todiwala is supportive of a number of “worthy causes”. Didnt he get an OBE, or something, for community stuff?

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Making noodles. Phongdien Town, Cantho City, Southern Vietnam.
Credit: CiaoHo