"Twice here in 2016. Absolutely consistent, gosh, its impressive when a restaurant can stay on form in this way. Did not recognise anything on the menu from previous visits but as ever here everything looks tempting and is delicious - had 8 different dishes and all were top. And the sherries are an extra treat. had another great dinner early April - the spicing and tastes are so original and spot on. Its busy and the service can slow up but always charming."
"The food is better prepared than on recent visits, and the staff is most accommodating. The menu is quite extensive."
"Much hyped and it lived up to it - this really is very special interesting delicately cooked Indian food. Definitely to return to. Not cheap but why should it be when the quality is this good."
"Really it's market is pizza express and it seems to fare well by comparison"
"Good quick fish restaurant"
"Love the "classiness" of this place, the first one outside of the US. Ambience is fantastic, it takes you back to another era. And they make a mean Bloody Mary"
"Continues to set the standard in steaks that ten pretenders have to aspire to"
"Why oh why do they have to dim the lights....it's not fitting with a buzzing place. Why do they not release all of the tables, leaving people hanging around at the bar. Why service wine in glass beakers. All in all it disappoints with the only saving grace that it''s a walk in steakhouse"
"Continues to shine. If anything the service has improved. Love this place."
"Simple and limited menu, but very well cooked chicken burgers. Far from fine dining, but for a quick bite in a no-fuss environment this takes a lot of beating. Great value for money aND MOST ENJOYABLE FOR WHAT IT IS."
The Observer's critic-in-chief heads to Manchester to try out the new Hawksmoor and stumbles across a veggie dining room, 1847, serving great food – well, apart from the desserts. Read our roundup of restaurant news in Manchester and enter our Hawksmoor Manchester competition.
Meanwhile the Guardian's Marina O'Laughlin pays a visit to the much gushed about Kitty Fisher's
Everyone else love, love, loves it but Marina can't help but feel she's ended up at a house party she wasn't quite invited to, particularly as the restaurant staff seem allergic to answering the phone. We can attest to that having called them on at least 10 occasions without success.
The award for most ferocious review this week has to go to The Sunday Times's A A Gill
The critic has a thing or two to say about Mayfair's 'ridiculously overpriced' Mexican, Peyote, including: “...fiddly, neurotic preparation with pale, polite taste and silly, parsimonious sharing plates that aren’t bounteous or fun and are more like eating the catering pitch for a drug cartel’s wedding.”
Over at The Times, Giles Coren gives his opinion on Russian-imported pizza chain Bocconcino
“Bocconcino isn’t a bad restaurant. It just isn’t a necessary restaurant.” At £202 for pizza and pasta it's not hard to see why Mr Coren might feel that way – mind you, a £46 bottle of wine probably helped nudge the bill up.
And last but not least, Ms Maschler reviews Brindisa's new Morada Asador
The Standard's long-standing critic heads to the latest outpost of this tapas chain (in Soho) and finds the meats are the reason to flock here – from the 'delectable' milk-fed lamb to the Secreto Iberico.
Pitt Cue Co W1 & EC2
“Pulled pork the best this side of Austin, TX” and other meaty-licious treats induce severe “cravings” in fans of this “brilliant BBQ”, just off Carnaby Street; “you find queues and end up sharing tables, but this is part of the experience!”.
If you can hack the “thumping house music” at this “über-hip Haggerston railway arch renovation” you’ll be dealt metal trays of “smoky, sticky, melt-in-the-mouth BBQ’d meats”, surprisingly “sublime veg dishes” and “excellent” cocktails; be prepared to queue though (no ressies – natch!).
On-trend for slow-cooking and smoking, but doing it rather better than most – a “wonderful” north Kensington newcomer serving “fabulous game, fish, bone marrow and veg” straight from the charcoal grill; “sit at the bar and watch your meal being prepared”.
“The best pulled pork this side of anywhere”, and “ribs and wings like you get in the deep South” are plain “brilliant” at this “lip-smackin’” BBQ; “you have to queue around the block at the hustling and bustling Brixton Market original, but boy is it worth it!” NB: Its Marylebone branch has now closed.
“The lights are low, the air is smoky”, at Ben Chapman’s “tiny”, no-bookings, Thai BBQ-newcomer in Soho, whose “short menu” focuses on “hefty chunks of meat, marinated and grilled to perfection”; service though can be a bit “too cool to smile”. Top Menu Tip – “the fish sauce wings alone are worth the visit!”
Duke's Brew & Que N1
“Hipster heaven” is to be found at this “laid back” US-style Dalston hang-out in the form of “proper, Texan-style BBQ (ribs to die for)” and “brilliant” home-brewed beer; even fans however can find it “massively too expensive”.
The Smokehouse N1 & W4
N1: “For an indulgent meat-oriented treat”, this “bustling” Canonbury gastropub serves “super-rich”, smoked dishes, although the menu is too “limited” for some tastes.
W4: “A bizarre smorgasbord of smoked meat, Korean spices and whisky – somehow it works!”; this new outer-Chiswick outpost of Neil Rankin's Smokehouse Islington (on the pub site that was the Hole in the Wall, RIP) wins fans both for its “interesting” food and “wonderful garden”. By the indifferent standards of W4, “it’s a step up for an area desperate for quality”.
One Sixty Smokehouse NW6 & E1
“Comfort food at its American best” – “sensational” ribs, wings, soft-shell crab burgers, etc – wins raves for David Moore and Sean Martin’s year-old “edgy West Hampstead smokehouse”, now also with a branch in the City.
The “Devastator Burger” is a hallmark of this “crowded and noisy” Kansas City BBQ concept, in Hoxton and now also in Clapham and Soho too, but like most of the fare here, while “substantial”, it’s “fairly expensive”.
These “very casual” US-style BBQ haunts “have some real competition” nowadays, and – though “reliable” – their meaty-licious mix of ribs, pulled pork, steaks, burgers and dogs needs to “up its game” to stand out as once it did.
Ones to watch
Rök EC2 (and N1 coming soon)
A new smokehouse and charcoal BBQ joint which arrived in Shoreditch last year, with meats by Cobble Lane Cured and menu by Matt Young (formerly of Ollie Dabbous's Barnyard). The second outpost of this scandi-inspired smokehouse opens in Islington next month, taking over a Grade II listed building on Upper Street.
Walter & Monty EC3
Yet another street food trader puts down permanent roots as this purveyor of Eastern-influenced, charcoal grilled meats and fish launches a restaurant in the City.
American chef Brad McDonald (The Lockhart, Marylebone) whose talents divide opinion among our reporters (apart from when it comes to his cornbread) brings more cooking from the Deep South to Soho with a new BBQ.
DJs mixing it up on the grill
Austen's Smokehouse NW10
He's used to slinging records but now DJ Yoda will be slinging classic pit BBQ dishes and other Southern US delights at his new smokehouse. Go we shall, eat ribs we will.
Smokey Tails N1
This ‘Beats & Eats’ pop-up created by DJ Seth Troxler, Wilderness festival co- founder Jo Vidler and 'flavour technician' (whatever that may mean!) Jona Ahearne is in permanent residency at Hoxton Square Bar and Kitchen. The roving restaurant returned to London after stints in Melbourne, Sydney, Miami and Amsterdam. The menu is inspired by the BBQ flavours of home-cooked Midwestern food Seth grew up with, a style he calls ‘Midwest modern’.
Street food BBQs
A Southern-style barbecue with its roots in the food culture of Atlanta GA, which uses dry rubs and dressing sauces on its brisket and pork. Pitmaster Gianluca Ivaldi fuels his smokers with lumpwood charcoal and oak to cook the meats 'low and slow'.
Prairie Fire (find them at various London locations)
A street food vendor describing itself as London's only 'Traditional Slow Smoked Kansas City BBQ'. Prairie Fire can be hard to find but the search is definitely worth the effort for their beef brisket and St Louis cut ribs. Follow them on Twitter for location updates @.
You can also find PFQ sauces and rubs in London’s finest butchers and markets: Wyndham House, C. Lidgate, Parson’s Nose, HG Walters, Jack O’Shea’s, Moen Brothers, Provenance Village, Brompton Food Market, Dugard Daughters, Kent & Sons and Allen's of Mayfair, to name a few.
Smokestak (find them at Hawker House, Dalston Yard and Dinerama)
Heralded by many as serving up the greatest ribs in the city, Smokestak is an eye-catching market 'cue with a huge steam engine-style smoker. Try the beef short rib, or, if you want to share, you can order the Flintstone beef rib – a mammoth undertaking!
Mark Gevaux’s “meltingly tender ribs and rolls of porky greatness” can no longer be found at KERB – now you need to go to Brick Lane on Sundays instead; his “fiery” sauces are the stuff of urban legend – “Look out! They’ll blow your head off!”
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