All reader reviews by shivers


I arrived here last night within a catís whisker of the end of the 10 minute grace period given to any table bookings. It would have been good if the staff had told me that Sakura had moved premises when I made the booking!

The remarkable thing about this place is that the food is excellent in contrast with the service. My only criticism was with the staff, and not the Manager; he acted like a gentleman to clear crowds out of the doorways to the toilets and the entrance when other patrons were passing by. The staff definitely need more training on how to wait at tables. That would get rid of the sloppy placing of food in front of people who hadnít ordered those dishes and the eye-rolling from one waitress when companions asked questions about items on the menus (which are now the size of protest march placards!).

All in all, this is a unique restaurant. I never go there for the service, only the fact that the food is extremely well prepared, and tastes great. When combined with the service and the booking rules, the restaurant delivers a weird mix of a totalitarian culinary experience which would please anyone who knew what good Japanese food tasted like and who had thick skin.

Just remember not to be late and show your appreciation for the service via the generosity of your service charge contributions!

Friday, February 04, 2011
Overall rating 5 stars
Food 8 | Service 2 | Atmosphere 5 | Value for money 5

Royal China (Baker St)

My sister booked a birthday party here last night for 25 people. Despite calling the restaurant to confirm the booking as well as the number of covers required, the restaurant still got it wrong and didn't reserve enough tables. One table had been set out already and the other table was empty. The head waitress was incredibly unhelpful and seemed intent on doing as little as possible and making it a really stressful occasion for us trying to ensure that enough people could be seated.

Thankfully, the food was good with the best dishes being the chicken in cashew nuts, as well as the Shaolin Monk vegetarian hot pot. The service has to be the best aspect because you really can ask any passing waiter or waitress for something and they will attend. I'd recommend not booking this restaurant in advance since they cannot cope with large groups and instead, turn up when you want to eat with a group no bigger than 4 people.

Sunday, February 08, 2009
Overall rating 5 stars
Food 6 | Service 5 | Atmosphere 6 | Value for money 3

C&R Restaurant

I don't understand some of the reviews on this page. C&R is a Malaysian restaurant on Westbourne Grove, NOT in Chinatown. I've visited C&R on many occasion and even booked a birthday dinner there last Tuesday for 15 people. Being objective, the service can be a little slow at times but the food is fantastic and really tasty. My favourites are the shreded crispy lamb and pancakes as well as the sea bass. The prices make the food very good value for money.

Please think about posting honest reviews about this restaurant, I've been visiting it for years and I don't think it's fair to confuse it with other restaurants in Chinatown when this restaurant is not even in the same area of London.

Sunday, February 08, 2009
Overall rating 7 stars
Food 9 | Service 5 | Atmosphere 6 | Value for money 8


I was really disappointedly with this restaurant (!). After reading so many negative reviews, I was expecting to see absolute pandemonium.

I'd booked a table for four at 8pm; a sign on the till warned patrons that they'd only be seated if they arrived together! We were seated within 5 minutes and promptly given some extraordinarily large menus. There's a lot of choice for food here and the prices are no worse than what you would expect for the West End.

The food arrived really quickly and although it was hard to get the attention of the waitress for our table, the service was surprisingly average for London with enough waiters/waitresses to cope with the floor.

I think too many people's expectations are too high. Mr Hiro certainly runs the floor like a dictator, clapping his hands at the waitresses whenever a table needs to be cleared. But the best thing about this restaurant is the food, it's quite authentic and tasty. Just remember if you want Shabu-Shabu or Suki-Yaki, then you need to tell the front-desk in advance so that they can give you a bigger table.

So, if you want to visit, just book in advance, turn up on time, and laugh off any bad service you might receive. I'd rather go to a restaurant like this with zero expectations and be pleasantly surprised than turn up expecting 5* service; frankly, this restaurant is unique.

Friday, June 27, 2008
Overall rating 5 stars
Food 7 | Service 4 | Atmosphere 4 | Value for money 5


I went to Paras for my birthday and had reserved a table for 15 people. Needless to say, Paras did a really good job with organising the table, laying out decorations, taking the food orders and even provided a birthday cake. Their service was excellent because the staff were really switched on and friendly.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007
Overall rating 9 stars
Food 9 | Service 9 | Atmosphere 9 | Value for money 8

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