The Cinnamon Club – Spicing it up

The Cinnamon Club is probably the most famous high end Indian restaurant in London.  It’s located in a lovely building and has two bars, one in the Library that is cosy and a more flamboyant one in the basement.

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Service was a bit lax initially, but it improved after we ordered. We went for a menu with matching wines, which was not very successful. Benares handles matching wines to Indian cuisine much better. The wines at Benares complimented the flavours of the very subtle Indian food. The Cinnamon Clubs Wine matches were competing too much with the flavour, all of them were really heavy and full bodied. I found the whole experience exhausting.

Some friends who visited The Cinnamon Club a few days before us, had issues with not being allowed to transfer the bar bill to the restaurant bill, which was inconvenient as the bar was busy and they ended up having to wait 15 minutes for it.

The restaurant has 2 AA Rosettes, which sounds about right.

Marks out of 10

Food  6

Service 5

Ambience 6.8

Cinnamon Club on Urbanspoon

LOCATION INFORMATION
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Reads – got the looks but not the substance

A while back Gordon Ramsay described Michelin-starred David Pitchford restaurant Reads, just outside Faversham as his 11th favorite restaurant in the UK (in the Sunday Times if I remember correctly).

Unfortunately our visit was a bit of a disappointment, at least on the food front, which was a real shame as the venue is quite lovely.

It is really sad that so many places get this balance wrong.  The restaurant has 3 AA Rosettes, which is 2 too many in my view.

Marks out of 10

Food 4

Service 5

Ambience 7

LOCATION INFORMATION
Browse Google Map© :- NoExpert Food Blog – Kent, UK

Restaurant Gordon Ramsay – Royal Hospital Road

Must do a return visit to Restaurant Gordon Ramsay – Royal Hospital Road, maybe once the credit crunch is over.  On my first visit I was pleasantly surprised how low key and unpretentious this place was, as all really good restaurants tend to be. The staff were highly professional and friendly.

The food here was off a high standard – do not confuse this place with other Gordon Ramsay outposts like :-

  • Boxwood Cafe – which on my visit served up fairly boring food on chipped china!
  • Claridges –  which has 1 Michelin star that I do not think it merits. This is based on my own experience and reports from friends, the conclusion being that the food in Claridges is quite ordinary and the service leaves a lot to be desired.
  • Maze – which does provide good food and wines, but is let down by the casual style of service and the room, which is far too big and somewhat  lacking in ambience.

Royal Hospital Road however is the real deal – haute cuisine at its finest. When we were there the man himself was actually in the kitchen (this must be a rarity now with all his TV work). The wines are also top quality, I had a stunning Gewurztraminer to accompany my Fois Gras. We over ordered on the dessert front though, as after a lovely light pre-dessert, we elected to share a rather large tarte tatin (we had spotted one at the next table and it looked so good), and some how managed to find room for the lovely petit fours too. We left the restaurant fully satisfied and off the opinion that this place seriously rivaled our then favorite restaurant Pied a terre.

Marks out of 10

Food – 8.8

Service 9

Ambience 7

Gordon Ramsay on Urbanspoon

UPDATE  April  2010 : The Boxwood Cafe is now closed and Claridges has lost its star.

UPDATE November 2010 : A friends recent visit to Royal Hospital Road, confirmed that the restaurant is still delivering outstanding traditional french haute cuisine and first class service.

LOCATION INFORMATION
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The Capital – post Christmas treat

The Capital had been on my wish list for ages.  I certainly did not expect to get a booking at a few days notice, especially for lunch on the Saturday after Christmas.  However if you do not try, you do not get.  One email reply later and we were all set.  The down side was that the only choice seemed to be the a la carte menu.

I was pleasantly surprised by the size of the room, it is small and quite intimate.

The style of food was pretty conventional – classic french cuisine.  One standout was a herring fish course, the flavour was so strong and distinct.

The matching wines were also first rate, even if they did push the price up quite dramatically. Overall it was a superb meal.

Update: Since our visit the Chef and a number of his team have left.

Marks out of 10

Food 8

Service 7.5

Ambience 7.5

LOCATION INFORMATION

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