January 2016: Former Le Caprice head chef Andrew McLay joins J Sheekey and J Sheekey Oyster Bar as head chef.
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“The kind of place that makes London special!” – Richard Caring’s “so-classy” institution (est 1896) is tucked away down a Dickensian alley “in the heart of Theatreland” and remains not only the survey’s most talked-about destination, but also its No. 1 for fish and seafood (narrowly trumping its stablemate Scott’s in nominations as London’s best). Beyond the doorman and intriguing, etched-glass façade, “congenial” staff are “amazingly well-drilled”, and the “warm and inviting” interior is “almost like an exclusive club, divided into small, oak-panelled areas”, and decorated with “black and white stills of famous actors”. Mind you, it’s “noisy”, and “you pack in like sardines!” Top Menu Tip – fish pie.
“Set in the hustle and bustle of Theatreland” – down a cute alleyway – this “star-studded”, “old-school” legend (est 1896, but dating its current celebrity to a late ’90s relaunch) is yet again London’s most talked-about destination. Nowadays owned by Richard Caring, it beat its sibling Scott’s to another crown: “the capital’s top seafood” (in particular “the world’s best fish pie”), which is “immaculately” served in a series of “old-fashioned panelled rooms” – “noisy and crowded”, but superbly “clubby” and “charismatic”.
Deep in the heart of Theatreland, this “peerless” icon (est 1896) is yet again London’s most talked-about destination; “straightforward, classical fish and seafood” (most famously, fish pie) is “slickly” served in a “cosseting”, if “squeezed”, ramble of “snug” and “classy” rooms.
“A class act” par excellence; Theatreland’s “elegant” fish-legend (opened 1896) is once again London’s most talked-about restaurant; “superb fish pie” is the exemplar of the “utterly dependable” menu, served in its “clubby” (if squashed) series of rooms.
J Sheekey Restaurant Diner Reviews
"This is such a classy restaurant. The menu is not overwhelming and does not change all that often but what it provides is excellent fish choices with your home comforts of fish pie on option. It is pricey of course but worth the cost. Also good to people / star watch!"
"Not as good as it used to be."
"A West End institution still serving excellent seafood"
"What can you say about the longstanding Sheekey restaurant. Still the best fish restaurant in London. A little pricey but the quality is absolutely undeniable."
"A treat to sit at the bar here (far preferable to the restaurant if there are only two of you in my view) - we usually manage to squeeze in without a booking but not always. 6 oysters and a glass of champagne are reasonably priced at £18.50 and squid or cornish fish pie a good second course choice. Wine is pricey but the experience is thrilling."
"Not sure what all the fuss is about. My guest described the food as high level fast food. But the service was impeccable and an object lesson in how to handle customers"
"Very crowded weekday lunch. The service was terrible. No warm welcome, all the (plentiful) staff were poker faced and one was overheard being rude to another. Waitress managed to empty crumbs all over my lap and over the table in front of me when clearing away the bread plates, but failed to acknowledge it or sweep it up. There was just one waiter with any charm. Whole baked sea bream was excellent, but starter salad only average. Stairs down to the loos were noticeably dirty, being brightly lit at floor level."
28-34 St Martin’s Ct, London, WC2N 4AL
lunch noon - 3 pm, Sat & Sun 3.30 pm, dinner 5 pm - midnight
Last orders: 11.30 pm, Sun 10 pm