|Last Orders||9.45 pm|
"Very good execution of the modern English food, and superb service as always. It is, however, in need of refurbishment and starting to look a little tatty."
"Beautifully presented food from a mouth watering menu. Smart but intimate. Great for the area to have this."
"A great all-rounder. Interesting food, friendly service (a little slow at times but they were packed to the rafters) and a comfortable, neighbourhood restaurant feel. Good value for money"
"Despite the high scores I've given, Trinity didn't quite live up to my (admittedly very high) expectations. We had the tasting menu and enjoyed a very nice meal, with a couple of stand-out dishes, but a few of them were just a bit 'good not great'. Service was vexcellent though; accommodating both my non-seafood and my wife's Coeliac's disease within the tasting menu structure and offering alternatives where required. Had i gone with lower expectations I might have been more excited, but overall it didn't quite hit excellence."
"A great new find! Superb food from Adam Byatt's kitchen, very professional staff, and friendly atmosphere. An excellent fixed price Sunday lunch menu, in addition to the a la carte. Parking awful!"
Adam Byatt is a foodie-world favourite. He first hit the headlines - in a modest way - back in 2002, when his Clapham restaurant Thyme was at the cutting edge of the 'tasting plate' revolution. Then - flushed with success - he moved Thyme to Covent Garden. It failed, however, and he subsequently re-launched on the same site as 'Origin'. Hidden-away on the first floor of a multimedia centre, Origin has still always had difficulty attracting the following its interesting cuisine deserves.
This new outlet takes Mr Byatt back to his 'roots', near Clapham Common (just a couple of hundred yards from the original Thyme). The obvious problem is that Clapham has never proved itself a 'natural' fine-dining destination, and you have to have real innovation or quality on your side to succeed.
Well, on our visit, there was no particular innovation, and nothing about this place was quite good enough. For a start, the setting is below the aspiration level: at £50 a head, you do not want to hear, as we could, a deep-fat fryer bubbling away during your lunch. (Nor to smell it, but that was probably just a ventilation teething problem.) But, in the last analysis, it was the food which let the place down. If customers go to the trouble of seeking out a place like this, they need to be rewarded with intense flavours. We weren't, with none of the half-dozen dishes we sampled really impressed. Even bread, hot from the oven, was a non-event.
Perhaps it was just early days. But we can't help thinking that a visit to Origin, with its handier West End location, would still be a better bet.
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