⦿ Jay Rayner of The Observer reviewed Plot in Tooting, “a sliver of a restaurant serving terrible cocktails and great food in one of south London’s traditional covered markets”. “Thick curls of squid, crusted with a chorizo crumb on a salad of tomatoes that taste of something, is a bit of textural fun. It’s followed by a dainty […]

Continue reading


⦿ Jay Rayner of the Guardian reviewed Radici, the new Islington Italian from Francesco Mazzei of Sartoria in Mayfair and, before that, L’Anima in the City. “Taglierini, fagioli and pancetta. That’s ribbons of a thin tagliatelle-style pasta, white beans and bacon, in a dense, starchy broth of such intensity and such conviction, you could be forgiven for […]

Continue reading


⦿ Jay Rayner of The Observer reviewed London Shell Co, a floating restaurant aboard a 30-year-old barge which is moored at Paddington over lunch and voyages along the Regent Canal while serving dinner in the evening. “It began as a pop-up on dry land, led by actor-turned-sommelier Harry Lobek and his sister Leah. In the small, diesel-powered […]

Continue reading


⦿ Jay Rayner of The Observer reviewed Claude Bosi at Bibendum, welcoming the former Hibiscus head honcho’s arrival at Sir Terence Conran’s light-filled 1987 classic. “What emerges is Bibendum redux, a restaurant with a profound understanding of the simple virtues; of a classical repertoire which is robust enough to take a little refinement.” “The starters list is full […]

Continue reading


⦿ In the Observer, Jay Rayner reviewed Barbecoa, the new Piccadilly flagship from Jamie Oliver (pictured, left, with Raymond Blanc), a grand and expensive “meat and smoke extravaganza“. “It feels like a big New York brasserie crossed with a branch of Hawksmoor. The real action is downstairs in a basement space which laughs in the […]

Continue reading


⦿ In the Observer, Jay Rayner reviewed Skosh, in York, which he found “the ideal of what an ambitious, independent restaurant should be”. “Neil Bentinck, formerly the head chef of Van Zeller in Harrogate, is a modern British cook who also manages to riff on the flavours of Japan and the Middle East without confusing either […]

Continue reading


⦿ Jay Rayner of The Observer reviewed Bundobust in Manchester, a “vibrant and cheap” combination of Indian veggie streetfood and craft beer that opened in December — and “by God, it works“. “Right now, the large, echoey basement space off the city’s Piccadilly feels like a big fat link in a chain, only one that hasn’t quite been […]

Continue reading


⦿ The Observer’s Jay Rayner reviewed Chop Chop in Edinburgh, which confirmed his view that dumplings are the ultimate comfort food – “While you are eating dumplings nothing bad can happen.” Opened in 2006 by Jian Wang, from Dongbei in northeast China, Chop Chop excels in its dumplings, although its other dishes were more variable […]

Continue reading


⦿  The Observer’s Jay Rayner reviewed The Salt Room, Brighton, overlooking the beach from the unpromising ground floor of the Hilton Metropole. “Good things are sometimes found where you least expect them, and this restaurant is a very good thing indeed.” “Most pleasing of the starters is the fish soup. A bowl arrives containing a soft, […]

Continue reading


⦿ Jay Rayner of The Observer reviewed Louie Louie in Camberwell, a daytime cafe that becomes a restaurant in the evening under chef Oded Oren, originally from Tel Aviv, who is “an absolute corker”. “Lamb sweetbreads come skewered and grilled over charcoal. There is a wedge of lemon to squeeze over them and a tidy pile of za’atar, […]

Continue reading