Eating Around: The Swan, Shakespeare’s Globe, Southbank, London

I’ve visited Shakespeare’s famed Globe theatre more times than I can count over the past few years, enjoying a wide variety of performances both in the outdoor circular stage area as well as the indoor Sam Wanamaker theatre. One thing however that I have been dying to do for absolutely ages is have a meal in the accompanying Swan restaurant. Peeking through the windows of this opulent looking British eatery, there was nothing I wanted to do more than nab myself a table and check out the menu. Luckily for me, my sister Jess and I received some money from our grandma at Christmas, with strict instructions to book ourselves in to see a performance and treat ourselves to dinner beforehand. We excitedly booked to see The White Devil in the Sam Wanamaker, preceding our show with an early Sunday dinner.

No doubt about it, the Swan restaurant is gorgeous. It’s so visually stunning that you simply feel more elegant and regal just by sitting in there. In glorious rich hues of gold paired with a statement charcoal grey and an abundance of modern ball lights and chic cream ceramic animal heads, the Swan manages to capture both trendy yet traditional, stylish and chic yet comfortable. It is glamourous in a rustically English way that polishes up lovely. It felt wonderful to be there as we were shown to our table in the restaurant, which is situated above the bar.

Ordering a bottle of Chenin Blanc from our suited waiter, we then turned our attention to the important task at hand – dinner. We had been given the Sunday menu which included the deal of two courses for £24.50 or three courses for £29.50. We immediately opted for the three courses. As we were mulling over our options, a bread basket was brought over, alongside a flat dish housing a disc of creamy butter. The bread had the holey inner appearance of a ciabatta, however it was also flavoured with herbs – I think rosemary, with green flecks here and there in the bread. With a dark, chewy crust and cut into thick doorstops, we knew we had found a safe food haven if this is how they served bread.

Starters was a tough choice, however I decided to play it safe and have the ham and savoy cabbage terrine, served with Yorkshire rhubarb and sourdough toast. Presentation wise, it was very arty and colourful. The terrine was the traditional ham coloured pink, flecked with large chunks of orange carrot studded throughout as well as the layer of bright green cabbage running through the centre for an extra splash of colour. If this wasn’t lurid enough, the rhubarb actually came in the form of a vibrant and robust puree, served as a puddle next to my lightly toasted half slice of sourdough bread. The puree was potent and punchy in flavour, really enlivening the terrine. It was colourful and creative and I enjoyed tucking in to this playful plate.

As it was Sunday, I decided to remain stoically British and have a roast dinner, however I veered away from the classic cuts of meat and inside opted for the pork belly, something I don’t usually have at home. When my plate arrived, I couldn’t resist licking my lips at the satisfyingly large hunk of meat sat dead centre in my plate, an island topped with crackling that was surrounded by roast potatoes, a caramelised onion, boiled carrots and cabbage as well as a large and imposing Yorkshire pudding. A dish of apple sauce was placed on our table, and our waiter poured gravy over our meals from a silver gravy boat. Wowee what a roast. The pork belly was amazing. The underbelly meat was tender and flavourful, the fat absolutely bursting at the seams with rich yumminess, while the crackling adding a moreish juxtaposition in texture, despite being more chewy than crisp (maybe due to the gravy?). Regardless, the meat was splendid and proves just how decadent a simple dish can be when executed perfectly. The Yorkshire pudding didn’t have the soft and squishy centre that is usually my calling card, however it was yummy and crisp. The roast potatoes were spot on with that delightfully fluffy centre paired with a crisp outer shell, while the colourful veg added a nuance of colour and healthiness to the edge of the plate. The onion was an unusual but really lovely touch – I haven’t had caramelised onion served with a roast before, however I think this combo really worked. This was some impressive roast dinner.

Despite being full to the brim thanks to the more than generous helpings, we were not going to stumble at the last hurdle, no siree. Plus, I had already spied the vanilla rice pudding served with plum compote and I was not going anywhere until I had tried it. Oh it certainly lived up to my dreamy expectations. The rice pudding itself was wonderfully flavoured so as not to be overladen with vanilla, but rather just beautifully accented, with the texture at that fantastic middle ground between goo and set custard which basically equals rice pudding perfection. The plum compote was zingy, flavourful and a real taste injection which was magic with the rice. The whole dessert was sprinkled with flaked almonds too giving the dish extra crunch and a creamy, nutty element. It was a match made in heaven with these flavour combos so I adored every spoonful. I didn’t need room to breathe, I just needed more dessert!

The wine we had selected was also fabulous and a great choice from Jess. It was fruity and light, very drinkable and bursting with zingy, fresh flavours. Our waiter helpfully propped it up in an ice bucket next to our table, even refreshing it when the ice turned to water to ensure our wine remained at an icy chill. The waiting staff were incredibly professional, poised and polite, with a splash of charm thrown in.

Price wise, with the bottle of wine, our meal came to £91. Usually such a price tag would have me cringing – not that I’ve ever paid that much at a meal for two! – but luckily this was a Christmas present treat, so we could afford a bit of a blowout treat on something so special. And it was special. The food was magnificent and I can’t compliment it highly enough. It may be basic and simplistic British favourites but the food is also uniquely playful and exciting, in both colour, appearance and taste. I absolutely loved going to The Swan and I think I’ll definitely be putting this on my Christmas list again next year!

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London Hilton at Park Lane, Park Lane, London

Dessert Sample Selection to get taste buds tingling

Dessert Sample Selection to get taste buds tingling

Set Menu:

  • Location: London Hilton at Park Lane, 22 Park Lane, London, W1K 1BE (nearest tube stations are Green Park and Hyde Park Corner)
  • Date of Visit: Friday 15th February
  • Time of Table: 6.30pm
  • Deal Bought From: Living Social
  • Deal Price: £39 for Two
  • Dinner Companion: Fiancé, Dan

Getting More for your Money?

This dinner deal includes:

  • Two Starters
  • Two Main Courses
  • Two Desserts
  • A bottle of wine to share or a cocktail each
  • For Two People
The classic bread basket has gone oriental

The classic bread basket has gone oriental

What we ate…

Katie:

  • Starter: Maple Glazed Pork Ribs
  • Main: Roasted Pork Belly in Oyster Sauce, with Bali Rice
  • Dessert: Dessert Sample Plate

Dan:

  • Starter: Maple Glazed Pork Ribs
  • Main: Roasted Pork Belly in Oyster Sauce, with Bali Rice
  • Dessert: Dessert Sample Plate

 

Dan's light and fruity cocktail

Dan’s light and fruity cocktail

What we drank…

  • Scorpion Cocktail  (rum, orange, almonds)
  • Singapore Symphony – not included (rum, gin, lime, passion fruit, orange and pineapple)
  • Rhusa Cosmo (lime, pineapple and light rum)

What did we think?

After a long and dull working week, arriving at the Trader’s Vic restaurant, situated within the London Hilton Hotel at Park Lane, was like greeting an exotic Amazonian adventure that promised a slice of escapism in its heady scents of French Polynesian cuisine, with a fat dollop of holiday spirit amidst the heavy tropical theme. With bundles of accolades and awards to its name, I was expecting the Hilton to really deliver on quality, and first impressions definitely contained the wow factor.

Decadent explorer's haven

Decadent explorer’s haven

After coming in through the hotel’s main revolving doors, the entrance to the Trader’s Vic basement restaurant was completely separated from the marble opulence of the main reception area, just to the left. Golden, Inca-style lettered sat heavily above a square cut opening, framed in elaborate bronzed and wooden carvings, providing a window to another world that descended down a wide spiralling staircase, carpeted in a rich navy blue. The further we walked down the staircase, the more it felt as if we were leaving reality behind, and entering a realm of rainforests, complete with over reaching plants, and decadent deep reds, hinting at the depth of decorated undergrowth.  The styling of the restaurant was definitely a demonstration of pure luxury, carefully reined in and yet splashed energetically with tiki-themed touches brushing every single corner of the eatery. The attention to detail in the exotic styling was so complete it had an amazing transportative effect – so much so that it even enabled you to overlook the restrictive voucher menu with barely a grumble of complaint. Bursting with totem pole icons, honey coloured lanterns and even a boathouse bar, we were both in complete awe at this amazing oasis, hidden as a foreign utopia under the regal dressings of London’s Park Lane.

After leaving our coats in the cloakroom, very polite staff led us to our table, despite the fact that we were about 25 minutes early for our reservation. Even they almost seemed liked actors, dressed in loud tropical floral print dresses to further the extension of the theme. The tables were incredibly well spaced, and overcrowded was not a concern at all. The mood lighting was ideal and added to the air of enclosed intimacy that the theme already openly encouraged. The deep red bucket chairs were really comfortable, and the table was also roomy, despite being just for two people.

Maple Glazed Ribs to start, paired with a duo of dips

Maple Glazed Ribs to start, paired with a duo of dips

When I first set eyes on this deal on Living Social, I was bowled over by the fabulous pricing and what was included – three whole courses plus a cocktail or wine to share. However, on reflection, I should have known that this was too good to be true as this was evident from our very restricted menu selection. We had three choices for both starter and main (one meat dish, one fish and one vegetable) and we didn’t even get to choose dessert – this was already stated as a sample selection which sounded a bit like pot luck to me, as it didn’t even tell us what we would be sampling. For drinks, we opted for the cocktail each instead of the wine, as Dan doesn’t really drink wine, although he has been known to knock back the pina coladas. With a venue famed for its Mai Tai’s, it would have criminal not to test out the cocktail menu, and with our voucher, we could select any one up to the price of £12.50 – a fact that the staff pointed out on numerous occasions.  My first choice was the deadly Scorpion – a concoction of rum, orange and almonds that was deliciously sweet and strong at the same time, dressed with an abundance of crushed ice in a decorative bowl like glass.

Whilst perusing the menu, the tropical version of the traditional bread basket arrived containing thin and crispy poppadum style crackers, surrounding a round dish of chunky tomato salsa that was surprisingly zingy and fresh, with a hint of ginger for extra energy. A nice accompaniment to kick off the snacking and the food adventure that was no doubt to come.

Inside Trader's Vic

Inside Trader’s Vic

Distracted by the oriental ambience, we chose from our limited menu happily, which looking back I am quite surprised about now! We both ended up choosing the same dishes – kicking things off with the maple glazed ribs. I don’t usual eat ribs at home and they aren’t my favourite joint, but out of the options, this choice seemed the most favourable by far – and boy was it impressive. Three thick and chunky rib joints, gleaming with the gorgeous glaze smothered on top, sat in the centre of a plain white plate. This then sat atop an elaborate golden heat stand, the flickering candle underneath keeping your meat warm. This contraption sat next to your cutlery on the table, actually in your place centre, staff gave us a lovely butterfly shaped dish, with one wing holding Chinese mustard and the other wing offering a sticky barbeque sauce. Granted, for such a classy establishment, we had no idea of the etiquette of rib-eating, but the fantastic flavours soon had us munching with gusto, gripping the bones with our fingers. The Chinese mustard was softer in flavour that classic English mustard, with a vaguely scented aftertaste. The barbeque sauce was wonderful, with great punchy flavours yet it didn’t overpower the meat at all. Sometimes ribs come up a bit on the thin side, but these bad boys were bursting with meat for us to get our teeth stuck into. On a whole, a really amazing starter, although interestingly enough, these ribs don’t actually feature on the full price menu.

Deadly Scorpion Cocktail

Deadly Scorpion Cocktail

As soon as our starters were whisked from our table, our mains were promptly plonked in their place, so a very quick turnaround. Neglecting the sea bass and the vegetable stir fry, we had opted for the pork belly for our main course, dressed in oyster sauce and served with a molehill of yellow Bali rice, threading with various vegetables. The presentation was clean and simplistic – one long slab of the meat, the neat mound of rice beside it, a sprig of some greenery balanced between the two. Even though the starters had been a good size, mains looked rather small and I was surprised that there wasn’t more of it. Cutting into the pork was a dream, with a crunchy top, squidgy underneath and the softly cooked pork beneath. The skin was a little tricky to cut at times but it was beautifully cooked and I have no complaints about the quality. The rice was also delicious and a really excellent side with the pork. The flavours weren’t as exuberant as I may have imagined (maybe the décor was doing all the talking?) considering the themed menu but it was well cooked and tasty, despite the small size.

Sticky Pork Belly with Bali Rice

Sticky Pork Belly with Bali Rice

Done with our choices for the evening, we were now in limbo as we awaited our mysterious dessert sample. When it arrived, it again came up incredibly small – I would have much preferred one, larger dessert given the choice. Served on a long and thin rectangular black dish, with three separate compartments, were three different sample-sized desserts.  In the first section, was a small rectangular brownie about the size of my little finger. It was a beautiful rich brown in colour, studded with nuts, although I couldn’t say what nuts they were. Topped with a drizzle of berry compote, this succulently dreamy dessert was right up my street and I sincerely wished I could have had a much bigger slice. A larger portion would have gone down a treat with what was in compartment number two, a perfectly round singular scoop of vanilla bean flecked ice cream.  Cool and creamily sweet, it was a match made in heaven with the deep chocolate flavours of the brownie.  And last, but by no means least, was a quarter of a slice of pineapple. Not much to look at, but once placed on your taste buds, they were assaulted by the roasted spice combinations of cinnamon and nutmeg, adding an entire new depth of warmth Caribbean flavours. Again, it was rather small, so not a lot to judge on, but it added a refreshing slash of juice to the fuller bodied flavours accumulating on the platter.

Table tiki theme

Table tiki theme

With our three courses done and dusted, it was just a matter of if we wanted anything else…naturally I did! I was intrigued by the rum-heavy cocktail menu. It had none of your traditional classics, so not a Cosmo or Sex on the Beach in sight, but I liked that. I enjoyed the fact that the intense and dedicated theme once again left its heavy handprint stamped across the cocktail menu, so I simply couldn’t resist the extortionately priced Singapore Symphony at £18. While Dan gathered his jaw from the crisp white tablecloth, I rubbed my hands together in glee at my additional treat. With bags of panache it arrived at our table, an entire pineapple sitting pretty, with a simple coloured straw poking out of the skin. Slurping the divine concoction of rum, gin, orange, lime, passion fruit and pineapple, I could feel the exotic and tropical booze go straight to my head. Lifting the top off my pineapple, I spied the pink cocktail, once again packed with crushed ice. If you prefer a creamy cocktail, then you may be hard pushed to find one you fancy, as they are all rum focused and full of vigour and vitality, so nothing overly soft toned here.

The impressive Singapore Symphony

The impressive Singapore Symphony

Once I had finished my concluding cocktail we got the bill – literally the price of my final drink and the service charge. Such a magical hideaway that is in sore need of some serious discovery.

Making a second reservation? Realistically speaking, I don’t think I would ever feel 100% comfortable paying for a full price meal in here, so on that basis I would say no. Although I thoroughly enjoyed the food I was given, the selection was so poor when compared with all the delicacies they had to offer. Granted, the price was fantastic – for £39 it was a complete steal if you look at their regular prices. But in some respects, you did feel that because of the limited menu selection. The service however was faultless and staff were very attentive, maybe anticipating that they would like us to spend more. However, we didn’t need to spend more, as the original offer was so all encompassing which is what is so attractive with these vouchers. My final drink was a mere treat, but unnecessary really if you were trying to save your money. Even though the portion sizes were small, the food was tantalising, exotically presented and really delicious on the taste buds.  The meat was divine to eat and perfectly springy.  It was also really refreshing going to a restaurant that offered a different mix of foods that normal, with such an unusual atmosphere.

Doorway to another realm...

Doorway to another realm…

The attention to detail was unbelievable and a clear demonstration in ideal showmanship with a master class in ambience and atmosphere. We were completely blown away by the mere setting of the restaurant, so realistically; the food didn’t have to do much to leave us happy. The mixture of wooden carvings and plush red upholstery instantly transported you to an entire new world, well worth the exploring – if you have plundered some lost treasure on the way down the stairs.

The Dinner Dates Opinion:

“Straight away I was relieved I was wearing a tie after seeing other customers wearing suits and ball gowns. I was blown away by the amazing attention and service we received. Being a ‘voucher’ customer can mean you get treated second rate but not here. The restaurant had a very relaxed atmosphere and the staff were very attentive and friendly.  The food was very tasty although the choice was a little small. The ribs were amazing and I could have easily eaten a whole rack. Overall I had a great evening and would go back but the expensive menu is a turn off.”

Dusky ambience

Dusky ambience

Orzo, Covent Garden, London

Chunky Vegetable Soup

Chunky Vegetable Soup

Set Menu:

  • Location: Orzo, 27 Wellington Street, London, WC2E 7DB (nearest tube station is Covent Garden)
  • Date of Visit: Wednesday 23rd January 2013
  • Time of Table: 7.00pm
  • Deal Bought From: Groupon
  • Deal Price: £29 for Two
  • Dinner Companion: Twin sister, Jess

Getting More for your Money?

This dinner deal includes:

  • Starter
  • Main Course
  • Dessert
  • Bellini
  • For Two people
Panna Cotta and Plums

Panna Cotta and Plums

What we ate…

Katie:

  • Starter: Chunky Vegetable Soup
  • Main: Slow Roast Crispy Pork with Sage Potatoes and Apple Sauce
  • Dessert: Flourless Chocolate Cake with Mascarpone

Jess:

  • Starter: Pear, Walnut and Watercress Salad with Gorgonzola
  • Main: Slow Roast Crispy Pork with Sage Potatoes and Apple Sauce
  • Dessert:  Panna Cotta with Marinated Plums

 

Loved the variety of glass shapes

Loved the variety of glass shapes

What we drank…

  • Bellini each
  • Glass of Prosecco each (not included)
  • Cappuccino each (not included)

What did we think?

Framed portraits add an intimate feel

Framed portraits add an intimate feel

Walking around the warren that is Covent Garden, my gaze was constantly averted by the sheer abundance of delicious eateries. Impressive glass faced restaurants gave a tempting tease of a glimpse into stylish interiors far beyond my meagre purse strings, whilst decadent patisseries invitingly flashed their sweet smelling wares, overburdened with fruits, chocolate and cream. My excitement was building and my hopes were high for fashionable Italian restaurant Orzo – our dinner destination for this evening.  Almost every venue in the quaint cobbled streets seemed to be a restaurant of some sort, with plenty of competition for Italian grub in the form of numerous Bella Italias and Stradas to name a few.

Firstly Orzo surprised me by not having the same ostentatious awning and massive glass front, but to be honest I rather liked its understated and sophisticated greeting. Going through the glass doors and descending down a small flight of stairs, the restaurant seemed to be situated in the basement of the building, giving an incredibly intimate atmosphere, as if it was London’s little secret.

Did someone say bread basket?

Did someone say bread basket?

I instantly loved the décor – so stylish yet not over the top with peach painted walls, covered in small black and white portrait photographs housed snugly in black wooden frames. Each photo was of a difference person, in a different situation and time, offering intrigue in abundance. The black stood our marvellously against the pale walls, which was mirrored in the peachy toned marble flooring. Impressively painted landscapes formed blinds for spaces that I assumed were some kind of windows. The layout was also ideal – we felt completely alone, the tables really nicely spread out so you honestly felt as if you were in your own little bubble. Simplistic chic returned again with the table set up, a stark and crisp white tablecloth with a flickering tea light candle in a clouded glass holder. The various glasses were a fantastic mix of shapes, with your classic wine glass, our long and slim-lined Bellini glasses and also the water glasses – round and stubby sitting on a short stem.

Pear and Gorgonzola Salad

Pear and Gorgonzola Salad

With excellent first impressions of the surroundings, I was eager to get stuck into the menu. This deal was a great bargain in my book as we were able to tuck in to an entire three courses. We kicked things off with our Bellini cocktail, a fabulous mix of refreshingly soft peachy undertones, lightened by the bubbles and fizz of Champagne. Can’t go wrong with a Bellini! If you are a fussy eater, then I think you may have experienced trouble with the special ‘Groupon menu’, and I must confess, I was a little worried at first. The options for starters included a pear and gorgonzola salad, which Jess instantly zoomed in on, loving anything with blue cheese. Being the opposite however I steered clear of that, and with mussels on the menu as well when I dislike seafood, that only left me one viable option for starters – the soup. I had everything crossed I would like the flavour, and when I was told it was chunky vegetable, I was relieved.

Inside Orzo

Inside Orzo

While we waited for our starters to arrive, we dutifully munched on the bread basket that we were given, that included thick slices of white crusty bread, ideal for dunking in the small dish of oil provided. I made sure to keep a few pieces to have with my soup. I know that many soups can just be so boring and lack taste, but this soup completely blew my mind – which is very rare to say about vegetable soup! There were so many vegetables in it, I could taste cabbage, celery, carrots, some kind of beans and probably loads more, to reveal a really flavourful and wholesome kick that oozed personality. It was so chunky, the vegetables still visible and floating in a broth like liquid. Served with thick, toast like croutons on top that was more similar to bread, it was a hearty start and I absolutely loved it. I couldn’t believe how full of flavour it was. Jess also enjoyed her dainty salad, although from where I was, I couldn’t really spot her beloved gorgonzola.

Mains again left me with just one viable option out of three choices. Another gorgonzola dish, this time pasta was offered as well as salmon – more seafood – but I was more than happy with the remaining option, delicious crispy pork, which is probably something I would have picked off their full menu anyway. The pork arrived in unique diamond shapes, a thick layer of crispy bubbling brown skin that cracked delightfully under your fork on top of soft, juicy flaking meat underneath. The blob of apple sauce was a perfect partner in crime for the multi-textured meat, as was the ideally cooked sage potatoes. The pork really was cooked divinely, the meat so soft and cut like butter, although the crispy topping was harder to tackle. It was a great explosion of flavour and texture in your mouth. The portion size was also really decent for both our starters and mains. My bowl of soup was huge, and for our mains we had two big chunks of the pork, accompanied by the pile of potatoes.

Thick and tender Pork Belly - divine

Thick and tender Pork Belly – divine

Once we had drained our Bellini’s, instead of opting for our usual wine, we decided to treat ourselves to a luxurious glass of Prosecco, which was actually cheaper by the glass than the rose – the ideal excuse in our minds! Beautifully light and sparking, it was a zingy and refreshing accompaniment to our main meal that was so full of flavour and a fabulous light meaty taste.

Dessert had us stumped between two options. We both love our chocolate, so the chocolate cake sounded wonderful, especially with the creamy mascarpone. However, plums are also one of my favourite fruits and I loved the idea of them, all tart and juicy with the gooey, wobbly panna cotta. In the end, we decided to get one of each and simply share them both, which turned out to be a brilliant idea. The chocolate cake was a flourless one, so it came up incredibly rich and dense in a thick triangle that really reminded me of a brownie. It had that same slight crisp to the top, yet that soft mud like texture to the actual cake. Powerful chocolate flavours that worked wonders with the light mascarpone. We even tried the cake with mouthfuls of the panna cotta which was also really delicious! The panna cotta had delicate undertones of vanilla and although it is normally considered a rather bland option, the plums packed a punch that invested the dish in purple juices and flavour. I adored my chocolate cake, and I have to admit to scoffing it down in hurried gleeful spoonfuls.

Clean and chic decor

Clean and chic decor

After our dessert had settled, we decided to conclude with a coffee – traditional Italian style – with a frothy cappuccino. Served in a small patterned cup and saucer, it really was rather dinky and not too big to push us over the ‘stuffed / bloated’ line. We were comfortable, full, and so impressed by the food.

Making a second reservation? Most definitely, and I would even go there without a voucher. There is already a pizza I am eyeing up on the full menu. Not only is the food flavourful and completely exceptional, but the attention to detail is superb. I absolutely loved the quirky and eccentric mix of plates and bowls they used that seemed to clash endearingly with the chic décor.  The plates were all different, with various floral and food patterns of blue, red and yellow in classic hand painted style. It was this eccentricity matched with the impeccable service from the waiting staff and the quality of the food and ambiance that really made me fall in love with Orzo, this little den of loveliness hidden underground.

Simply stunning Chocolate Cake

Simply stunning Chocolate Cake

The deal that we bought from Groupon, was also fantastic. Three whole courses plus a Bellini for just £29 is a steal. The pork dish alone on the main menu was nearer £20 each. We paid an additional £19 for our two Proseccos and cappuccinos which makes a very respectable price for what we had. The service charge was a bit steep at £13, so we took that off and paid a service charge that we could afford. Something to bear in mind though is that we did have to choose from a set menu for our meal, and with only three choices per course it was very narrow. We were just lucky that there was at least one thing we liked from each course so that we could still enjoy the meal. Definitely something to look out for, for the fussier eaters.

I really recommend this patch of little Italy, and I can’t wait to return.

Quaint coffee to finish

Quaint coffee to finish

The Dinner Dates Opinion:

“Going to Orzo made a lovely evening.  I found the staff to be very friendly and welcoming and I really liked that the tables were well spaced! So many places in London feel so cramped so this was really nice. We had a table for four for the two of us which was nice and roomy! The bellini we had was a fruity peachy number, the only downside being that we then couldn’t find it on the cocktail menu to order another one! For starters I had a salad with the classic combo of walnut, pear and blue cheese. The cheese was more of a dressing as opposed to chunks, think I would have preferred more cheese but it was a lovely starter. For mains, we had some of the best pork I’ve ever had! The meat was so juicy and the crackling was so crispy, it was just a delight. The accompanying sauce and potatoes went very well with it. For dessert I had the panna cotta which was lovely and creamy and the plums opposed this nicely. The deal menu only had about 3 options per course so was quite limited but what they did offer was lovely. I would like to go again without a deal so that I could try some of the other things on the menu, but would probably only be able to afford a pizza/pasta since these were the cheapest mains, some of the larger meat/fish dishes charging nearly £20 for a main (I am a student!).  Also being in Covent Garden means that it is accessible if you are out and about in London and there would be loads of places to go to after or to continue shopping after lunch.”

Cosy and comfortable

Cosy and comfortable