RestaurantsLondonCovent GardenWC2

survey result

Summary

£97
 ££££
2
Average
2
Average
3
Good
* Based on a three course dinner, half a bottle of wine, coffee, cover charge, service and VAT.

The eclipse of this former icon of Theatreland by the nationwide chain it spawned (and its adjoining club) is continuing, and the volume of feedback it inspired sank significantly this year. A fair amount of glam still remains, but the A-listers are long gone, and standards are “hit and miss nowadays” to the extent that it too often delivers an experience that’s “overpriced, formulaic and mediocre”.

Summary

£97
 ££££
2
Average
2
Average
3
Good
* Based on a three course dinner, half a bottle of wine, coffee, cover charge, service and VAT.

“It’s just so, so comforting… out-of-towners, especially those north of 50, always find it magical!” This “always buzzy” and still-famous Theatreland icon (‘rolled out’ by Richard Caring over the last ten years as a national chain) is, says fans, “still a wonderful experience”. Such advocates often feel that “it never fails to impress” (even if the A-listers moved on a few years ago) and – for business occasions – appreciate the fact that “clients love it!” Even such boosterism often acknowledges, however, that “these days better food can be found elsewhere” (“it’s not remotely going to challenge or educate your palate”). And, while it’s long been accepted that “you don’t come here for its comfort food”, its ratings nowadays support harsher critics who feel that “it’s just become an overworked clich锓the food is moving to the disappointing level of the chain… and service too”.

Summary

£87
 ££££
2
Average
3
Good
3
Good
* Based on a three course dinner, half a bottle of wine, coffee, cover charge, service and VAT.

“Nowhere near as exclusive as it once was, but still a formidable competitor” is perhaps a fair summary of the disparate views on the original Theatreland icon that Richard Caring used to inspire his national brasserie chain. That it’s “now no better than the lookalikes across the country” certainly carries a lot of weight when it comes to its middling comfort food: “there was plenty of sparkle and fun amongst our fellow diners but none on the plate: I’ve had better pub food!”. Still, it continues to inspire an impressive amount of feedback, especially amongst romantics who feel “its seductive interior is still great for dates” (“not the glamour spot it was, but can still impress!”).

Summary

£83
 ££££
2
Average
2
Average
3
Good
* Based on a three course dinner, half a bottle of wine, coffee, cover charge, service and VAT.

“An old favourite, but the diffusion-brand has tarnished its name” – it feels like this Theatreland legend is steadily being sacrificed for the greater good of its growing stable of spin-offs. Many supporters do still feel its “comforting” menu delivers “reliable, traditional British food” in a “classy and buzzy” setting and that the trip is “still worth it (especially if you can get into the adjoining Ivy Club)”. But scores here are heading inexorably south across the board, supporting the many former regulars who feel the place “misplaced its soul, serving food that’s decidedly average at best” and “lost its caché” to the extent it’s “a shadow of its former self”.

For 33 years we've been curating reviews of the UK's most notable restaurant. In a typical year, diners submit over 50,000 reviews to create the most authoritative restaurant guide in the UK. Each year, the guide is re-written from scratch based on this survey (although for the 2021 edition, reviews are little changed from 2020 as no survey could run for that year).

Have you eaten at The Ivy?

Restaurant details

Highchair,Portions
60
No shorts
110

The Ivy Restaurant Diner Reviews

Reviews of The Ivy Restaurant in WC2, London by users of Hardens.com. Also see the editors review of The Ivy restaurant.
Paul S
The Club: great decor. Attentive staff - ex...
Reviewed 11 months, 6 days ago

"The Club: great decor. Attentive staff - except when it came to refilling wine glasses. Competent middle of the road cuisine, at wallet bleeding prices, as one might expect from Mr Caring."

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Prices

Availability 2 courses 3 courses coffee included service included
Lunch £26.50 £31.50

Traditional European menu

Starter Main Veggies Pudding
£13.95 £31.00 £5.25 £10.50
Drinks  
Wine per bottle £41.00
Filter Coffee £4.00
Extras  
Service 13.50%
1-5 West Street, London, WC2H 9NQ
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Opening hours
Monday12 pm‑11 pm
Tuesday12 pm‑11 pm
Wednesday12 pm‑11 pm
Thursday12 pm‑11 pm
Friday12 pm‑11 pm
Saturday11:30 am‑11 pm
Sunday11:30 am‑10:30 pm

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