By the standards of London restaurants, then, and for this standard quality, it is very good value. Even so, the no bookings policy is a total pain in the arse
This “shabby-chic” place is “charming” and “serves great food, unpretentious food”, and with staff who are “chatty and knowledgeable when you want them to be, and leave you alone when you don’t”. Also the price charged is “not a lot, considering”.
Amol Rajan, The Independent on Sunday (Rating: 9.5)
“The Holy Grail for which your correspondent has been searching: an exquisite tasting menu in London for less than £50”. The only quibbles are a “horrendous” view of flats over the road, toilets “so achingly trendy and dark as to seem positively Satanic” and staff who are just too “attractive”, but “there is nowhere in London to match”.
Giles Coren, The Times (Rating: Food 8, Notion 9, Sustainability 6.5, Overall 7.83)
“Having chosen to do very little here, they do it as well as it can be done.” This “low-ceilinged ex-pub off Piccadilly [has been] funked out... in exposed brick... with the fashionable New Yorky whiff of the Russell Norman Polpo chain”. Giles does not recall ever having “liked a place enough to return the very next day, in 15 years of reviewing”.
Despite the “annoying” name, this new adjunct to the “shiny-scaled Millennium centre” provides “cracking value”. In good weather it’s “a lovely place to be -- modern, very light and with only the faintest hint of that canteen air you tend to get in theatre or museum restaurants”. Meanwhile chef Kurt Fleming under Shaun Hill produces a “local and seasonal” menu with slightly up-and-down results, but a number of “brilliant” moments.
Tracey MacLeod, The Independent (Rating: Food 3/5, Ambience 4/5, Service 4/5)
Having “dismissed it as a PR stunt”, this “in-movie fine-dining concept” turns out to be “a real... thing”, even if it’s “possibly the most middle-class thing” Tracey has “ever done in [her] life”. The menu may be limited to “Finger, Fork and Spoon” but the selection is “surprisingly varied” in some cases “rather ambitious”, and results are “mainly pretty good”. “To call it fine dining is a stretch, but it's certainly a fine – and different – night out.”
“Basics are very good” at this ex-pub, where the “ambition to create an affordable neighbourhood restaurant” is enhanced by “some really exciting wines” some “at extremely low mark ups”. It doesn’t take bookings, and Nick’s piece generally looks at the economics and rights and wrongs of a no bookings policy.