The Lawyer Eats
Nicky Richmond heads back to a glamorous past for lunch at the Ritz, but finds less pleasure in dinner.
It is a Monday lunchtime and a tedious morning has my brain looking for a food-based displacement activity. There is nothing speaking to me within a mile of my office and I am not in the mood for polite conversation.
I’d last been to The Clove Club on Valentine’s Day, that passion-killer which ranks up there with New Year’s Eve as top of my nights to stay at home under all circumstances.
Think about your dream neighbourhood restaurant. It would have a chef-owner who actually cooks in the kitchen. It would be around the corner, so that you could stagger home, if and when necessary.
Petersham Nurseries. Remember that? Of course you do. You’ll probably be remembering its glory days, under Skye Gyngell, when it had a Michelin star and everyone went on about how expensive it was.
My FOMO has reached new proportions. I know that this is a mix of Japanese, Brazilian and Peruvian, pure con-fusion food.
Shall we go to Cliveden? I say to C, who is sitting on the chair in the kitchen, playing with his phone, whilst I am preparing a schedule of mortgage requirements for a new client.
No, it’s not the Newman Street Tavern, a hop skip and a jump away, around the corner, on Newman Street but it’s confusing to your average punter, this two Newman-named gastropub malarkey.
Nicky Richmond tries out two restaurants owned by the Gladwin brothers, experiencing wines from success and a farmyard on acid decor.
Pidgin, London E8 8, Hoxton Square London N1, and Salty’s, Isle of Wight
There is, I am told an unspoken rivalry between local supporters of Trinity, Clapham and Chez Bruce, Wandsworth and there are very definitely two camps.
Have I eaten in a morgue? Google the death of fine dining and you’ll see a plethora of articles telling us it’s all over.
I feel like I’m five, says C, waving his arms high in the air and simulating an exaggerated knife and fork movement. The chairs in the raised section of the restaurant are too low or the tables are too high, it doesn’t matter which.
#Firstworldproblems no 1: being irritated by the OpenTable booking message telling me I can only have the table for a two-hour slot.
I have lived in London for more years than I care to remember, but I have never before been to Ham Yard, slap, tickle and bang in the middle of Soho.
Nicky Richmond finds the perfect antidote for a booking disappointment at the tiny, but excellent, Antidote.
“Can I have some of the vegetable curry”, said the man next to me at the Farmers’ Market. The voice sounded familiar. “Oh and some of the rice too, please”. I looked sideways. It was David Cameron.
”What do you mean we have to order using an iPad?”, says J, making her mind up in seconds and not in a good way. And the table is only for two hours because we are a party of fewer than five.
It must be very confusing to live on the road known variously as Euston, Marylebone and Pentonville Road. One road, three names. It wasn’t always so; in 1857 the road’s name was changed from New Road to its current nomenclature.
It’s the unfairness of it that rankles. And it’s not like I haven’t dragged myself across the river to Clapham twice already in the last six months. It doesn’t seem entirely right that the good burghers of Clapham have not one, but three restaurants I’d be happy to eat at any day of the week.
Nicky Richmond learns to fly, Thai-style, at the Heron in the West End.
Nicky Richmond takes her tastebuds for a whirl to Hunan, relinquishes choice and has an excellent meal.
Nicky Richmond goes back in time to the Gay Hussar, where the food is average but the ambience outstanding.
Nicky Richmond looks for comfort food - and finds it - at Farringdon restaurant St John
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