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Bocca di Lupo

Marina O'Loughlin, Metro (Rating: 4/5 stars)

Ms O’M is growing a bit wary of places like this Soho newcomer, which has quickly become a “critical rave”, but is “currently struggling to live up to the hagiographies”. “A table is currently about as easy to find as a non-delusional Apprentice contender”, she notes, and “like the equally acclaimed Terroirs, it has suffered as a consequence. Prices have crept up, service is strained, some dishes seem a little slapdash”. There are some “terrific dishes”, but “some duffers, too”. She opines that “this restaurant-of-the-year stuff comes from over-excitement about an independent restaurant doing decent food at accessible prices in a city still bloated with expensive high-end options”, but her long-term prognosis for the place is favourable nonetheless.

Andrew Edmunds

David Sexton, Evening Standard (Rating: 3/5 stars)

“There are lots of reasons why a person might not like Andrew Edmunds”, says the critic. Its Soho premises are nothing to look at, and the service “although intelligent and friendly, can be pretty direct”. “You might even find the food lacking in ambition if you’re the kind of chump who demands a lot of fuss and complication on your plate every time you eat out, but “[p]lenty of [literary types] find Andrew Edmunds about the most sympathetic venue in all London”. “The ambience is Hogarthian, not just Dickensian”, and the food is “pretty good, though not the main point”. And oenophiles can find really top value.

Chelsea Bar

Fay Maschler, Evening Standard (Rating: 2/5 stars)

“It is early days at Chelsea Bar Bistro and the chef may well learn to temper his ambition and instead give free rein to his heart-warming enthusiasm”, says the critic, at the conclusion of her long review of the dining room above the World’s End pub. Much of her piece is taken up with some historical background of the type which only Ms M – with her 34 years of experience – can really provide.

Soju

Guy Dimond, Time Out (Rating: 4/6 stars)

“One of many Korean restaurants to have opened in Soho in the last five years, Soju – named after the distilled Korean spirit – is comparatively tucked away, but seems constantly busy with Korean diners”, says TO’s head man. He finds it a good all-rounder, offering particularly impressive value at lunch.

Double Club

Guy Dimond, Time Out (Rating: 5/6 stars)

The critic is swept away by this “unlikely hit” of a temporary restaurant, which serves food both French and Congolese. “[T]he bar’s packed every night, and the wait for a dinner table is longer than an MP's expenses claim form.”. The secret, it turns out, is that “Double Club has attained that elusive quality – cool”. “Double Club is even described as an ‘art project’. A bit pretentious perhaps, but the design is certainly striking.” Cooking is often “to a very high standard” too, and service is “slick”. “Wear your sharpest threads – and get there before the summer, when Double Club is likely to close forever.”

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