Hot picks, new restaurants.  Supported by Tabasco.

Hot Picks

“Welcome back Mon. Loubet” we’ve missed you...

In the autumn of 2009, Pierre Koffman’s wildy successful pop-up restaurant on the roof of Selfridges put down a marker for honest French food. Hurtful people would have been tempted to describe Koffman’s cooking as old-fashioned, but one diner’s old-fashioned is another’s authentic, traditional and delicious.

Chicheti at the Bacaro anyone?

Polpo is the hottest of hot tickets, even during this year’s extreme weather events there was a queue of hopefuls enduring the no booking policy and edging their way towards the inside and the bar. It is amazing how a restaurant can go from zero to hero in a few short weeks. Some places are just intrinsically trendy. Polpo is the brainchild of Russell Norman, who has made the transition from suited and booted maestro at the Caprice Group to harassed owner driver of a small but mobbed Italian resto with considerable success.

Seeking Sicily

So it’s out with Gennaro Contaldo, Passione and endless re-telling of how he taught Jamie to make foccacia ….and it’s in with chef/patron Santino Busciglio and a rigorous refurb. The director/owner of Mennula Joe Matorana and Busciglio both come from the same part of Sicily although Busciglio arrived in London via living in Bolton.

Tap, Tap, Tapping Away

As more and more restaurateurs seek that magic formula – the one that allows them to succeed however dire the economic climate becomes – more and more of them are turning to tapas. There’s French tapas at the magnificent Terroirs tucked away beside Trafalgar Square; there’s Italian tapas at the equally fine Boca di Lupo on Archer Street. Small plates and plenty of them seems to be something of a watchword. And then there are the Spanish tapas bars which come complete with a dose of righteous indignation and murmurings about plagiarism.

Comfort Versus Craving?

The coldest winter for however many years was rugged enough to make you think about food. The conventional wisdom is that when it’s cold we all turn to carbohydrate and so the articles roll off the conveyor belt – hearty stews, thick soups, wondrous new ways with baked potatoes and cheese. But all such dishes appeal in June – providing you add a drop of melancholy to the mix. A much, much better option is to turn to the Middle East. That’s right, think winter and think Arabia.

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“Welcome back Mon. Loubet” we’ve missed you...

In the autumn of 2009, Pierre Koffman’s wildy successful pop-up restaurant on the roof of Selfridges put down a marker for honest French food. Hurtful people would have been tempted to describe Koffman’s cooking as old-fashioned, but one diner’s old-fashioned is another’s authentic, traditional and delicious.

Chicheti at the Bacaro anyone?

Polpo is the hottest of hot tickets, even during this year’s extreme weather events there was a queue of hopefuls enduring the no booking policy and edging their way towards the inside and the bar. It is amazing how a restaurant can go from zero to hero in a few short weeks. Some places are just intrinsically trendy. Polpo is the brainchild of Russell Norman, who has made the transition from suited and booted maestro at the Caprice Group to harassed owner driver of a small but mobbed Italian resto with considerable success.

Seeking Sicily

So it’s out with Gennaro Contaldo, Passione and endless re-telling of how he taught Jamie to make foccacia ….and it’s in with chef/patron Santino Busciglio and a rigorous refurb. The director/owner of Mennula Joe Matorana and Busciglio both come from the same part of Sicily although Busciglio arrived in London via living in Bolton.

Tap, Tap, Tapping Away

As more and more restaurateurs seek that magic formula – the one that allows them to succeed however dire the economic climate becomes – more and more of them are turning to tapas. There’s French tapas at the magnificent Terroirs tucked away beside Trafalgar Square; there’s Italian tapas at the equally fine Boca di Lupo on Archer Street. Small plates and plenty of them seems to be something of a watchword. And then there are the Spanish tapas bars which come complete with a dose of righteous indignation and murmurings about plagiarism.

Comfort Versus Craving?

The coldest winter for however many years was rugged enough to make you think about food. The conventional wisdom is that when it’s cold we all turn to carbohydrate and so the articles roll off the conveyor belt – hearty stews, thick soups, wondrous new ways with baked potatoes and cheese. But all such dishes appeal in June – providing you add a drop of melancholy to the mix. A much, much better option is to turn to the Middle East. That’s right, think winter and think Arabia.

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  • Cafe Pacifico
  • Green & Red
  • Taqueria
  • Wahaca
  • Chilango
  • Benito's Hat