Harden’s regular round-up of the restaurant critics’ musings, from the week ending 19 May 2019. The Coconut Tree, Cheltenham “Eating well is an expression of normality.” Jay Rayner for The Observer was in the Cotswolds, seeking out normality in the form of Sri Lankan street food, as a way of re-establishing what’s good after the […]

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Harden’s regular round-up of the restaurant critics’ musings, from the week ending 5 May 2019.  Bross Bagels, Edinburgh Grace Dent for The Guardian has nothing but love for the “Canadian-Jewish bagel bakery owner Larah Bross” and the Montreal-style bagels served at the three Edinburgh branches of Bross Bagels: “a whirlwind of perfectly judged brashness and thoughtful, […]

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Harden’s regular round-up of the restaurant critics’ musings, from the week ending 28 April 2019.  Pasta Ripiena, Bristol Jay Rayner for The Observer isn’t afraid to say it: “the best things to eat are rarely the prettiest”. He was in Bristol, eating plates of pasta that look like “paintings by one-year-olds that proud parents stick […]

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Harden’s regular round-up of the restaurant critics’ musings, from the week ending 21 April 2019. Happy Easter! Xier, London W1 Grace Dent for The Guardian is always “questioning the entire point of modern haute cuisine” – especially lengthy tasting menus “often done badly: too pompous, too many petals, too few carbs, not a lot of […]

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Fishmarket, Edinburgh When in Edinburgh Jay Rayner for The Observer always heads to Ondine, and its “pitch-perfect seafood”; you can imagine how delighted he was to discover a sibling restaurant, “a collaboration between Ondine chef Roy Brett and his long-time suppliers Welch Fishmongers,” on the docks at Newhaven. At Fishmarket there’s a “classic metal takeaway counter” […]

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Peg, London E9 Jimi Famuwera from The Evening Standard is the latest critic to pay a visit to Peg; it reminded him of LA restaurants he’d visited (mostly because of the feeling of “smugness and nagging inadequacy” it engendered), but he soon admitted that his first impressions were quite wrong. The “no-reservations arrowhead of a […]

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EartH Kitchen, London N16 Jay Rayner leaped straight in to describing the food when reviewing EartH (not a typo) Kitchen for The Observer; stopping just long enough to explain that it’s “the restaurant of a major new arts venue in London’s Hackney”. Crispy pig’s cheek salad was “an adult bowl of food designed to make […]

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Angelina, London E8 Jay Rayner for The Observer visited Angelina despite the “acute flashbacks” he suffered when told it was a fusion of Italian and Japanese food; it took him right back to the “unmitigated disaster” that was Shumi in 2003. Luckily for him, and us, Angelina avoids any such disaster: it “feels like a […]

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Jay Rayner Instead of a review this week, Jay looks back over his 20 years as The Observer’s restaurant critic in an article that ranges from 1999 (the year MPW retired, Jamie O debuted his Naked Chef show, Restaurant Gordon Ramsay hit its stride and The Fat Duck won its first Michelin star), through the […]

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The Crown, London W4 Jimi Fanuwera for The Evening Standard went out to west London to try out the latest of chef Henry Harris’s “expanding stable of amiable new-wave gastropubs” – The Crown in Chiswick. He was expecting “a sort of cosy, creaking coastal tavern that had been magically airlifted on to a corner in […]

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