Archive for the ‘Where to eat’ Category

Where to eat – Westminster and Pimlico

Friday, February 8th, 2013

Westminster/Pimlico is not really the part of London you think of visiting for good restaurants.


There a few that are actually worth a visit.

Roux at Parliament Square – Michel Roux Jnr’s first class restaurant, Steve Groves (Master Chef Winner 2009) is head chef.

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City Cafe – at the Hilton Doubletree Hotel - Modern European food and a rather nice outside seating area


Osteria Dell’Angolo – upmarket Italian.


Quirinale -  upmarket Italian.

Rex Whistler Restaurant at Tate Britian – great wine cellar.

The Cinnamon Club, Great Smith Street - famous Indian restaurant.

The Rocks - something of a gem on Vauxhall Bridge Road.

and for information a couple of decent breakfast venues, see post


A Wong – Highly acclaimed modern Chinese restaurant

Art of Tapas – a new Tapas bar that’s a bit of find.

Gastronomica – an interesting cafe/deli in the heart of Pimlico.

Goya – A popular and reliable Tapas bar.



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Where to eat and drink – Sussex

Sunday, June 19th, 2011


If you fancy a trip to the Seaside then here is a list of the some of the more interesting places I have found on or near the Sussex coast.


The Waterside Restaurant (Eastbourne) -  Superior restaurant in a stylish boutique hotel. For something a little bit different I would recommend having dinner here.

Morgans (Eastbourne) – Good value set lunch.

Thai Marina (Sovereign Harbour) – Consistently high quality Thai food in pleasant surroundings.

The Sundial in Herstmonceux – Ideal for a special treat.


47 Mussel Row (Littlehampton) – Worth a detour for the excellent Sea food.

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No Expert Guide to East Kent/Isle of Thanet

Monday, July 20th, 2009

Updated December 2015

If you fancy a trip to the Seaside or have recently moved to this beautiful part of the UK, here is some guidance to help you find some of the better places to eat, drink and shop in East Kent/Isle of Thanet. The information provided is based on local knowledge and should help you avoid tourist traps.

The Guide focuses on the seaside towns of RamsgateBroadstairsMargate and Deal.

The Guide also covers the nearby town of Sandwich and the village of Minster.



Some of the more interesting independent shops are highlighted in the following sections of the guide, other useful information covers local supermarkets, and where relevant Retro and Gallery shops :-


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Where to eat and drink – Lausanne and Ouchy

Monday, June 22nd, 2009


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If you fancy a trip to Lake Geneva, Lausanne is a great place to use as a base. Here is a list of some useful restaurants and bars in Lausanne and nearby Ouchy.

Beau Rivage Palace Hotel -  in Ouchy, do not bother with any of the hotels restaurants*, instead have a relaxing drink or two and some bar snacks on the terrace overlooking the lake.


*Update: Anne-Sophie Pic is now running the Gastromic Restaurant here, so maybe it is worth trying the distinct food of France’s only female 3 star Michelin chef. Especially now the Restaurant has been awarded 2 Michelin Stars.

Alternatively you could have lunch on the Beau Rivage’s paddle streamer while it makes its way across the lake to Evian, dessert is served on the return trip.

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Charlies Place - comfortable bar and restaurant in the centre of Lausanne, good cocktail list and free wi-fi. CLOSED

Click here for more information


Diva – pleasant bar near Lausanne station that does superior bar food.

Click here for more information

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Pur – trendy restaurant, bar and club in the Flon.


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Where to eat, drink and stay – New York

Tuesday, April 21st, 2009


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The restaurant scene in New York is very fluid, so I would do your research before you go, and book the top end restaurants at least a month in advance.   Here are some of my favorites (they have been around for years, which is a good sign):-

Gotham Bar and Grill -  a class act, and one of New Yorks Michelin Star restaurants.

Marks out of 10

Food 6.9

Service 7.5

Ambience 7

Blue Water Grill – Great for Brunch

Marks out of 10

Food 6

Service 6

Ambience 6

Eleven Madison Park – stylish, great deserts.

Marks out of 10

Food 6.9

Service 7

Ambience 7

Red Cat – Very cool, very New York

Marks out of 10

Food 6

Service 6

Ambience 6.5

The Plaza – Just one of these places you have to visit once.


Marks out of 10

Food 5

Service 6

Ambience 7

Other recommendations

Cafe Sabarsky - Tucked away within the Neue Gallerie in Upper East Side, great for Viennese pastries.

Bryant Park Grill – the outdoor bar for drinks

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Marriott Marquis Hotel in Times Square - it has a revolving Restaurant and Bar. Just go for the Bar (The View), its a great way to see New York, and yes I do believe it is the hotel where Arnie took the horse into the lift in True Lies.



Dylan Hotel – it’s a boutique Hotel in a excellent location, just next to Grand Central station so perfect for public transport, which along with walking is the only way to do Manhattan.

Roof Garden Cafe at the Metropolitan Museum – open from May through to November (weather permitting – except for Mondays), fabulous views over Central Park. The elevator to the roof is hard to find, so you may need to ask a guard.



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Where to eat and drink – London Bridge, Bermondsey, Bankside (Southwark)

Sunday, March 15th, 2009

There are lots of restaurants to choose from in the Southwark area.  I have listed a few of my favorites.

Albion - Located in NEO Bankside, it’s a Shop, Bakery and Cafe, it’s great for Cake and Coffee and has outside seating. Part of the Conran Group.

Del’Aziz - Mediterranean Delicatessen and Brasserie, good venue for Cakes and Brunch.

Delfina - well cooked, quality food. Open for breakfast and lunch, occasional evening openings.

JoséJosé Pizarro’s tiny Tapas bar in Bermondsey Street.

Tas (Borough High Street) and Tas Pide (Bankside)

Tapas Brindisa – Close to Borough Market

The Table - Tucked away a couple of streets behind the Tate Modern, it’s ideal for late Breakfasts and Brunch.

The Hide Bar - excellent selection of wines, beers, spirits and cocktails, it also does regular wine tastings.

Village East (171-173 Bermondsey Street) – Good venue for carnivores, a popular place that does excellent steaks.

Vinopolis – There are several restaurants in the “City of Wine”. The Cantina Vinopolis is the best one in my view.

Zucca – Bermondsey’s answer to the River Cafe.


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Where to indulge in Coffee, Tea and Cakes

Sunday, February 22nd, 2009

Unless you are in an area that specialises in Tea Shops, its often hard to find good venues to relax with a coffee or tea and eat cake. Why go to the big chains like Starbucks, when you have alternatives.


If you really want to go up market and have Afternoon Tea somewhere grand, like The Athenaeum or  The Berkeley, then great, but if you are looking for something cheaper, then here are a few options.

County Hall Bakery

Patisserie Valerie

Patisserie Valerie

New York

Actually the Starbucks I have been to in New York are a lot better than London. I had an amazing piece of Cognac and Pumpkin cheese cake in one on the Upper East Side, but for something more unique try:-


Pretty much the home of the pâtisserie, so you are spoilt for choice, however for an inexpensive option, try:-

or for a not so inexpensive option, visit Ladurée.

Off topic, but also worth mentioning is The Chocolate Consultancy – Parisian Chocolatiers Map showing  locations of some really good Chocolatiers in Paris.

Where to eat – Barcelona

Wednesday, February 18th, 2009

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Barcelona has so many fabulous restaurants, but like many cities it also has lots that should be avoided. On our first visit many years ago now, we did no research and basically just went to places that were convenient and  looked OK. We have long since learned how dangerous that approach is. So if you are visiting Barcelona, here are a few recommendations to get you started.


  • El Jardi – A refuge from the hustle and bustle.

Mid Range

High End


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Where to eat and drink in Londons West End – Tourist Central!

Thursday, January 29th, 2009

The West End technically covers:-

Bloomsbury, Covent Garden, Fitzrovia, Holborn, Marylebone, Mayfair, Seven Dials, Soho, St James and Westminster.

That is a pretty large area, so I am going to focus on the centre of the West End or Tourist Central, i.e., places around Trafalgar Square and Piccadilly Circus. This is mainly because finding a decent restaurant or bar in this area is a bit like finding a needle in a haystack.

So here are my top 10 recommendations, in no particular order.

1. The Albannach , Trafalgar Square – A very stylish “Scottish” Bar and Restaurant.  Open for Breakfast too. I would recommend reserving a table here rather than doing a walk in, you can make a reservation on line using their website.

2.Rockwell, Trafalgar Hotel – Two Top class bars (Upper and Lower Rockwell – Upper Rockwell is the roof top bar with stunning views), service can be a bit hit and miss.

3.Thai Square, Trafalgar Square – it’s not the best Thai restaurant in London by any means, but it is part of a reliable chain. (It has recently won an award to say it is the best – so judge for yourself).  It is also a good location for larger groups.

4.The Portrait Restaurant, in the National Portrait Gallery – reliable food, good for an inexpensive “Afternoon Tea”, great views over Trafalgar Square. Can get very busy at peak times, so I would also recommend reserving a table here via their website.

5.Asia de Cuba,  St Martins Lane Hotel – Very stylish and expensive venue, food is specifically designed for sharing, so ideal for groups of 4 or more.

6.The Mint Leaf, Piccadilly – a stylish, Modern Indian Restaurant and Bar. Good Pre Theatre venue.

7. Brasserie Roux, Piccadilly – a good choice for a pre theatre meal, the restaurant is in the Sofitel Hotel. The Hotel has a comfortable cocktail bar, which is a  refuge from the crowds. There is also the Rose Room, which is good for a more upmarket  “Afternoon Tea”.

8. 5th View Bar & Food, Waterstones, Piccadilly - For a book store cafe, this place is great, it does good reasonably priced cocktails and the food is way better that you would expect (limited choice though). Nice selection of cakes – the carrot cake is particularly good.

9.The Wolseley, Piccadilly – European Style Brasserie, very popular, stunning room – great for people watching if you can get a table.

10.Atheneaum Hotel, Piccadilly – The restaurant serves classic British food. The hotel also does a really good “Afternoon Tea” and has a bar that is both cosy and stylish (and expensive!). It also has The Pudding Parlour which I have not tried, but it does sound and look wonderful – Pudding Parlour post



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