London’s hottest new restaurants offering pocket-friendly dining

214 Frenchie WC2Restaurant and pub spending dropped in the week following the announcement of the EU Referendum result, according to Barclaycard figures. The dip suggests diners are feeling more cautious about splashing out on meals and drinks in the wake of Brexit, although it may also have something to do with a horribly wet June. Whether there will be long term Brexit implications for the restaurant industry remains to be seen, but certainly the pace of new restaurants opening in London is currently unaffected.

There are, however, plenty of hot new restaurants offering cracking dining deals at the moment. Perfect for the fashionable foodie on a budget…

 

Brillat savarin cheesecake_dessertFrenchie WC2

Anyone who has tried to bag a table at this buzzing new French brasserie in Covent Garden will know what an impossible task it can prove to be. Opened by Greg & Marie Marchand in February, this Parisian import has been perpetually rammed. So we welcome news that Frenchie is launching a very good value pre-theatre menu – a much more accessible way to try out this popular spot.

Guests can enjoy three course with a glass of Le Grappin wine for just £28. On the menu:

Heritage Tomato Salad, Cherries, Wild Oregano & Ticklemore
Foie Gras Royale, Raspberries & Pickled Girolles

Lincolnshire Chicken, Smoked Aubergine, White Miso & Zaatar
Cornish Stone Bass, Carrot, Borlotti Beans & Kumquat

Bitter Chocolate, Hazlenut Crumble & Smoked Bacon Ice Cream
Brillat-Savarin Cheesecake, Passion Fruit, Pistachio & Elderflower
Mimolette Cheese, by Jean-François Dubois at La Finarde Farm

 

Blandford-Comptoir-2-783x375Blandford Comptoir W1

This small, wine-focused restaurant in Marylebone from Texture and 28°-50° restaurant group co-founder Xavier Rousset opened last month to rave reviews. Jay Rayner was particularly impressed: “Cosmopolitan, suave, charming… this lovely Italian shows what a good idea EU membership was.” Blandford Comptoir serves a Mediterranean menu of small and large plates, but the main event is the 250-strong wine list (and 50-strong champagne list).

Oenophiles looking for a bargain bite to eat should stop by for lunch Monday-Saturday, noon-5 pm, where they can try the Dish of the Day with a glass of wine for just £15.

Meanwhile The Times’s Giles Coren called their slightly pricier seafood summer special (£30) ‘the sexiest set menu ever’. It includes:

Six Maldon Rock Oysters, six Sicilian red prawns, raw sea bream

and a glass of house champagne.

 

Interiors 4 - PRESS SHOTThe Frog E1

Another piping hot launch from just last month, this airy, verdant Shoreditch venue has the look of a Bohemian conservatory. It comes to us from MasterChef finalist Adam Handling (do we all remember him? He’s the chef who should have won the title back in 2013) who was previously at The Caxton. Going by last year’s survey feedback on Adam Handling at the Caxton, the chef clearly found the hotel dining room format stifling (a reporters found it a trifle ‘pretentious’). Not so here it seems. The Frog has had very positive reviews of not only its skilful dishes, but its price-friendly attitude in both the Evening Standard and Bloomberg. There aren’t many other places in London to tuck into a tasting menu for £45.

The Bottomless Brunch is just £25 pp with limitless Bloody Mary or prosecco. On the menu:

Beef potato hash, confit onions, fried egg
Egg Benedict
Salmon Benedict
Spinach Benedict
Poached Eggs on sourdough toast with avocado
Pancake, burnt honey, crispy bacon, fried egg
Yoghurt, nut granola, summer berries
Bacon & fried egg bagel

 


restaurant oursRestaurant Ours SW7

It’s had a bit of a rough ride in the press (Fay Maschler’s infamous 1 star review comes to mind which was challenged by chef/patron Tom Sellers in his blog Faymous: A response). Critics were particularly prickly over the price of some dishes at Restaurant Ours, the new South Ken venture from the man behind Bermondsey’s legendary Story. Perhaps the public will be kinder? Especially now that there’s a new set lunch menu available – £30 for two courses and £35 for three – so they can sample this newcomer for less.

On the menu:

Gaspacho
Cured bream, buttermilk, wood sorrel
Soft egg, truffle, pancetta, girolles, charlotte potato

Our club sandwich
Tagliatelle al Vongole
Gnocchi, peas, broadbeans, chervil, oyster mushroom

Apricot, praline, beurre noisette ice cream Raspberry mille-feuille
Lemon, hazelnut, caramel, yogurt ice cream

 

01_TheWoodford_BenMurphyThe Woodford E18

Pierre Koffman protégé (and former Young Chef of the Year) Ben Murphy – just 25 – was backed by Essex restaurateur Steve Andrews to open this ambitious, 100-cover restaurant in South Woodford back in March. Set over two floors it boasts an oyster and seafood bar, chef’s table and a tasting menu alongside à la carte dishes inspired by classic French techniques and British produce. With three courses for £47 or the full seven course tasting for £70, The Woodford is at the pricier end. However, go for lunch on Wednesday or Friday and you’ll find a bargain: Two courses with coffee for £19 or
three courses with coffee £24.

On the menu:

Green Asparagus

Parmesan | Egg | Walnut

Red Mullet
Courgette | Elderflower | Tomato Water

Wood Pigeon
Beetroot| Cocoa|Cherry

Spelt 
Mushroom | Chive |Lemongrass

Cod
Leek Ash | Squid Ink | Basil

Chicken
Smoked Cous Cous | Red Pepper | Tamarind

Apricot
Cardamon | Almond | Shortbread

Chocolate 
Praline | Vanilla | Liquorice

Exotic Bavarois
Coconut | Passionfruit | Banana

 

sOSHARUSosharu EC1

High end Japanese cuisine, as we all know, can be some of the most expensive around – all that sparklingly fresh fish costs money. And Jason Atherton’s foray into London’s growing izakaya market is no different. Sosharu, which opened on the former site of Turnmills nightclub in Clerkenwell in March this year, is pricy there’s no doubt – but you can eat very well there for less by taking advantage of one of these set menus:

Chicken Bento Box £17 (add a glass of sake £21)

Chicken karaage, lemon, salt

Udon noodles, slow cooked egg, sesame dressing

Seasonal vegetable salad, purple mizuna, yuzukosho dressing

Homemade pickles

Ice cream or sorbet

 

Seafood Bento Box £19 (add a glass of sake £23)

Salmon teriyaki

Kyoto-style chirashi, tuna, salmon, egg threads, sushi rice

Seasonal vegetable salad, purple mizuna, yuzukosho dressing

Homemade pickles

Ice cream or sorbet

Vegetarian Bento Box £16.50 (add a glass of sake £20.50)

Broccoli tempura, kimchi dressing

Udon noodles, slow cooked egg, sesame dressing

Seasonal vegetable salad, purple mizuna, yuzukosho dressing

Homemade pickles

Ice cream or sorbet

 

Early dinner £29.50 (add a glass of wine of sake £34.50)

Available until 6 pm for two people to share

Elderflower cured salmon, tosazu jelly

Asian pear & avocado salad

Chicken karaage, lemon, salt

Kyoto-style chirashi, tuna, salmon, egg threads, sushi rice

Tonkatsu crumbed pork, sugar snap peas, vegetable oroshi

Apricot kakigori, mint mochi

 

Coming soon… look out for this delicious deal

A new partnership between One Aldwych and renowned chef Eneko Atxa will see the launch of an informal Basque dining spot and bar at the Covent Garden hotel. Due to open in September, Eneko at One Aldwych will deliver traditional Basque cuisine.

Before that though there’s a soft launch throughout August when guests can enjoy 50% off food. Bookings are now being taken for lunch or dinner seven days a week on 020 7300 0300 or via www.eneko.london, though walk-ins will always be accepted.

On the menu:

Txerri Boda Pork Festival – a trio of Ibérico ham and mushroom duxelle in milk bread, suckling pig brioche and pigs trotter bocata

Basque-style hake tempura, red pepper sauce and parsley emulsion

Dressed beetroot tartare

Bomba rice risotto with Idiazabal pesto

Rice pudding lollipops with crisp white and dark chocolate hazelnut coating.

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