All reader reviews by mal

Bar Boulud

Excellent Saturday lunch and the set meal at £23 is amazing value, the orange duck was outstanding, pulled pork burger was stunning, booze ain't cheap but you are in a swanky bar in Knightsbridge, friendly service and as it was only half full there was none of the rushing mentioned earlier.

A very pleasant experience and will definitely be returning.

Sunday, July 21, 2013
Overall rating 8 stars
Food 9 | Service 8 | Atmosphere 7 | Value for money 7

New Tayyabs


Three years after my last visit and things have gone downhill badly, despite the empty tables upstairs on a sunny Saturday afternoon we were ushered into the dingy basement and had one menu virtually thrown at us and had to find a second one myself.

Food was ordered and then taken to another table by mistake, it finally made its way to us and I have to say the grilled meats are still as good as they were, seekh kebabs being the pick.

After finishing our £2.50 bottle of mineral water we asked for a jug of tap water, not available downstairs apparently, so we were given large stainless steel vases of tepid tap water.

The mains finally arrived swimming in ghee and quite bland , the spinach and potato had been cooked to death and tasted of nothing in particular .Rotis were good but the Naan was again swimming in ghee.

After seeing other frustrated customers trying to pay by card we left cash and bailed out .

I will not be going back here and returning to the Lahore in future when in this part of town.

Very poor..

Sunday, July 21, 2013
Overall rating 3 stars
Food 5 | Service 1 | Atmosphere 2 | Value for money 5

Barcelona Tapas Bar Y Restaurante (Dulwich)

I live not far from here and have been many times over the years,not so often these days -maybe 3 or 4 times a year but don't recognise it from the reviews below.

Two of us went there last week had a variety of dishes all of which were good especially the Chorizo al Vino.

My only criticism of this place over the years is the hit and miss service when very busy and the West End + prices in a local restaurant.

Two of us pigged out on 6-7 dishes had a nice bottle of white,puddings and brandies for £80,not great value but enjoyable.

Saturday, May 21, 2011
Overall rating 7 stars
Food 8 | Service 6 | Atmosphere 7 | Value for money 7

Raavi Kebab

Three of us went on a Thursday night arriving at 10pm .we were told it was last orders and the place was full,within five minutes we had a table - ordered grilled kebabs and a choice of Meat and Veg dishes,all arrived at the same time but who cares,food was all tasty and piping hot ,the kebabs were very tasty indeed with a hint of lighter spices like cinnamon and cloves,the curries were a wee bit oily but its the oil that is infused with the taste,just don't spill it on your clothes!They are also on the hot side of medium so if you don't like it hot then have a word when you order.Rice was OK nothing special but the Naan breads were great.

In all it was £35 for a blow out inc service and doggy bags to take home.

Service may be brusque but its not a place to linger over a glass of wine.....

Great Pakistani food in central London.

Sunday, February 13, 2011
Overall rating 8 stars
Food 9 | Service 7 | Atmosphere 6 | Value for money 9


Faultless meal,excellent service ,great wine.

Fish soup,Pigs trotter and Apple tarte being the highlights .Slightly corporate hotel like decor but then its a windowless basement,a great night out for 4 quite a lot of wine drunk and it still didn't break the bank,will be back there soon hopefully.

Saturday, August 21, 2010
Overall rating 9 stars
Food 9 | Service 9 | Atmosphere 8 | Value for money 9

Mirch Masala (Tooting)

Seekh Kebabs,Chicken Tikka,Jeera Chicken wings,Onion Bhajia and a Naan bread - £11

Tell me thats not the best value tasty lunch you can have.

I never eat Onion Bhajias really apart from here-a big tangled mess of onion in a sweet and spicy batter,today they arrived after everything else because they were freshly cooked,melt in the mouth good.

It was empty this afternoon but gets rammed in the evening and the service can get hectic but have never messed up our order,its all good here.

Saturday, July 31, 2010
Overall rating 8 stars
Food 9 | Service 8 | Atmosphere 7 | Value for money 9

Le Chardon (East Dulwich)

This place used to be a lovely local restaurant so despite the reviews 2 of us ate there a few weeks ago and I am afraid I can only echo the comments below.The food can only be described as average home cooked bistro fayre,no dish was worthy of being singled out and the cheese selection was virtually frozen,It was a lovely summer evening and the place was busy but not full and it was not difficult to pick up on a few people being disgruntled with the service which can only be described as borderline rude.We got away quite lightly but a couple who complained about warm white wine were offered ice cubes to put in it after being told the only bottle left had not been in the fridge.

Its always been a lovely space at least they can't spoil that and not many moons ago there wasn't really a lot of competition in the area,now there is.

Try harder.

Friday, July 23, 2010
Overall rating 5 stars
Food 5 | Service 2 | Atmosphere 7 | Value for money 6

Original Lahore Kebab House

Whilst I agree the service here can be a bit varied I have never eaten a bad meal here in over 20 years.Grilled meats are fabulous and some ( not all ) of the curries are very good-lamb chop curry and keema aloo are the highlights for me.

If you don't like a canteen style atmosphere,frantic service,noise,good value food I suggest going elsewhere.

Friday, July 23, 2010
Overall rating 8 stars
Food 9 | Service 7 | Atmosphere 7 | Value for money 9

New Tayyabs

As a firm fan of other Pakistani eateries in the area I went for a lunch with friends who were raving about the place.Tandoori starters were very good ,breads good too,curries were OK but nothing really had a wow factor,very good value and slightly hurried service even though the place was emptying out after lunch.

Not sure if its worth queueing around the block for in the evening when there are so many other good options within 500m.

Friday, July 23, 2010
Overall rating 8 stars
Food 8 | Service 8 | Atmosphere 8 | Value for money 9

Green & Blue Wine Bar

First visit here with friends the other night,sadly we arrived late and a few things on the menu had sold out but all the rest of our tapas type food was very good-simple fresh and tasty.

The wine we ordered was also sold out but the waitress recommended another which was great,so we had more!

The atmosphere was also civilised and not as full on as a few places on Lordship lane on a friday night.

Very pleasant,we will return.

Friday, July 23, 2010
Overall rating 9 stars
Food 8 | Service 9 | Atmosphere 8 | Value for money 9


I have eaten here many times over the last 3 years and can't say the service has been anything like it is described below.I have always found it utterly professional,respectful and courteous.Two weeks ago, three friends and I had a very long lunch and were still there as the evening covers were turning up and at no time were we rushed or given any signs that it was time for us to leave.The food has always been of high quality and whilst it may not win any awards it never ever disappoints-the Wild Rabbit on Toast we had to start was wonderful.Always an enjoyable experience for me and all my friends I have recommended it to.

Saturday, November 14, 2009
Overall rating 9 stars
Food 8 | Service 9 | Atmosphere 9 | Value for money 8

L'Autre Pied

At £20.50 for a 3 course lunch its hard to imagine better value anywhere in London.Yesterdays menu was superb - Pan Fried Mackerel, Beetroot Purée, Horseradish Cream, Pickled Shallots was sublime ,the Venison with pearl Barley and Pomme Gratin was melt in the mouth delicious and probably the best Venison I have ever had and the White Chocolate tart with Mango sorbet was as good as it gets.Service is very professional and the room is perfect for lunch-not sure what its like in the evenings but it won't be long before I found out.Very highly recommended.

Saturday, November 14, 2009
Overall rating 9 stars
Food 9 | Service 9 | Atmosphere 7 | Value for money 10

Bentley's Oyster Bar & Grill

Lunch for 3 - the food was OK but out of our 9 dishes nothing really had a wow factor just competently cooked fish ,we were also told that several of the mains had already finished thus limiting our options ,given that the room was only two thirds full at most it was a bit poor..The main problem being the service - after being hustled a couple of times into ordering food I was told to wait for the sommelier to order the wine,this took quite a while and our pre starter of mixed oysters turned up before he did-once ordered the wine then took an age to arrive,water glasses were filled spasmodically by waiters various and when we asked for another bottle the order was forgotten twice.A few other things grated on us such as the lights being dimmed when there were only 3 tables left in an attempt to get us out and the bill arriving without being asked for,at almost £100 per head for a not too boozy lunch we probably won't be returning or recommending.

Thursday, November 12, 2009
Overall rating 5 stars
Food 6 | Service 4 | Atmosphere 6 | Value for money 4

Quo Vadis

Very pleasant experience last saturday evening,grown up service,excellent food and good atmosphere.Notable dishes were the Calfs brains,Veal Cutlet and Rib for two-puddings were possibly the weak link but may have been down to bad choice after rich main courses/starters.A good value bottle of Urbina “Reserva Especial” topped off an excellent meal.Well worth a visit if it stays this consistent.

Monday, November 09, 2009
Overall rating 8 stars
Food 8 | Service 9 | Atmosphere 8 | Value for money 7

Alastair Little

£38 for a set lunch, in my opinion this represents poor value for money even in the centre of town - food is well cooked but presentation is nothing special and the service was friendly but patchy on the lunctime that I visited even though the place was only half full.I have paid less for more - Pied a Terre for instance.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007
Overall rating 5 stars
Food 7 | Service 5 | Atmosphere 5 | Value for money 3

Clos Maggiore

Good value set lunch ,decor nothing special ( fake blossom in the conservatory) but the cooking is solid especially on the simpler dishes - reasonable selection of wines by the glass but some of the bottles are well overpriced,service competent and charming a times - worth a visit.

Thursday, October 04, 2007
Overall rating 8 stars
Food 8 | Service 8 | Atmosphere 6 | Value for money 8


Seems we were not alone when we turned up for our table and they couldn't find our reservation - lots of head scratching and finally we were accomodated-food was very good, service Ok but this place really lacked atmosphere for a saturday night-the decor is uninspiring and when the staff are yawning in front of the customers thats not a good sign-may go again for lunch but would pass on dining there again in the evening I think.

Sunday, April 22, 2007
Overall rating 6 stars
Food 8 | Service 6 | Atmosphere 3 | Value for money 8

Villandry (Great Portland St)

Shocking service,waitress in a dirty shirt who asked if I wanted my steak tartare,well done,medium or rare - I abandoned that idea after being told it left the kitchen pre - seasoned and went for the 1/2 lobster salad - a huge mistake-2 tiny pieces or rubbery lobster on a stack of freezing cold smashed potatoes with 6 tiny cubes(3 mm square) of beetroot-great value at £16.50-not.I wanted to write nice things because its a lovely room and all the stuff around is great but this place really does need to sort out its staffing issues-needless to say I wont be returning!Oh and the mains arrived 70 minutes after we ordered in a place that was only 1/3 full.Avoid.

Monday, March 12, 2007
Overall rating 2 stars
Food 2 | Service 0 | Atmosphere 6 | Value for money 0

El Pirata

I visited one of my old haunts for the first time in ages - I wasn't dissapointed,very little has changed ,the food and service are still great and the atmosphere on a busy saturday evening was lively.My only possible bone of contention was that I had forgotten how large some of the portions were and left feeling very full indeed ,2 of us ate for £70 inc 2 glasses of cava and a nice bottle of rioja - too full to eat puddings - some things never change and in this case its a very good thing!

Saturday, October 28, 2006
Overall rating 9 stars
Food 9 | Service 9 | Atmosphere 9 | Value for money 9


Despite last years re-decoration taking away some of the feeling that you were in Spain the food is still wonderful and the service great-Lamb cutlets being the jewel in their crown I think, though the artichokes ,suckling pig and chicken livers wrapped in bacon weren't far behind,As we were the last to leave and our cabs were taking forever the last remaining member of staff let us wait inside and fortified us with a few free brandies rather than letting us wait in the rain as he locked up - what more can you ask for!Great place ,delightful staff wonderful tapas.

Saturday, October 28, 2006
Overall rating 10 stars
Food 10 | Service 10 | Atmosphere 8 | Value for money 10

The Greyhound Pub and Dining Room

Lousy service unless you are a regular or one of the friends of the barstaff it seems,I have to agree with the reviews below,average food and poor value for money which is a shame as it was great when it first opened.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Overall rating 4 stars
Food 4 | Service 4 | Atmosphere 4 | Value for money 4


Despite the decor lacking a certain ambience and the place only being half full when we visited-but it was one of the hottest nights of the year and the air cond was working well thank god, the food was excellent,stick to the fish and southern indian specialities and you cant go wrong,the cod in banana leaf was fabulous and the biriyani really was 10 out of 10.Service was great and charming in its own way,worth going out of your way to Quilon-highly recommended

Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Overall rating 8 stars
Food 10 | Service 9 | Atmosphere 6 | Value for money 8

The Windmill

Can't disagree with the previous reviewer,the pies are amazing and my colleagues Sausage and Mash could teach a few gastro pubs a lesson, a drinkable bottle of Malbec for about 12 quid and great Banana Tarte Tatin made for a really great value quality lunch in Mayfair - under £25 per person - I have paid a lot more more a lot less.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Overall rating 9 stars
Food 9 | Service 8 | Atmosphere 9 | Value for money 8

Pied a Terre

Went there a couple of weeks ago for a lunch for the first time since it had re-opened and wasn't a thrilled as I had been on previous visits ,the food was still fabulous but service left a bit to be desired for once.Tha man on the next table was sat alone and looked like he had been stood up however a mobile phone call to his lunch partner found that she had been sitting at the front of the restaurant for 20 mins while he had been ushered into the room at the back.We too encountered problems over our desserts,I went off the set menu whilst my colleague stuck to it,sadly we were both brought the same dessert heavy discussions ensued and despite putting my case forward in French to the waiters was left feeling like it was my fault,both desserts were removed and no apology offered- when they finally arrived after a 20 min wait they were both great but the damage was done by then - even places this good have their off days.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Overall rating 8 stars
Food 9 | Service 5 | Atmosphere 8 | Value for money 8

Raavi Kebab

Eaten here many times and have to say the food is great and very good value,keema peas being a fave of mine,the food can get a bit on the fiery side and the incomprhensibly bad service can frustrate,go out of peak hours to avoid being rushed or having to queue.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006
Overall rating 7 stars
Food 9 | Service 3 | Atmosphere 6 | Value for money 9


We decided forgo the Lahore Kebab House on a busy sunday lunch and go to this new branch of the Mirch and having eaten in their Tooting and Southall versions it wasn't too much of a chore.At least 6 of the asian family on the next table appeared to be eating the same dish so we decided to follow,it was the old fave Karahi gohst ,once it arrived it wasn't difficult to see why so many people were tucking in - fabulous lamb in an amazing sauce with a richness and depth of flavour that is rare outside the subcontinent,Kebab curry was also great if not a little bit fiery,garlic naans were sensational as usual and service was good but not great but the place was creaking at the seams that day and people were waiting for tables,a welcome addition to the chain.I will return.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006
Overall rating 8 stars
Food 9 | Service 6 | Atmosphere 7 | Value for money 8

Bentley's Oyster Bar & Grill

See the comment below - similar experience,painful service ,shocking decor and atmosphere ,tiny portions of Dover sole and inflated prices - we decided to forget dessert and leave early - not so easy - asking for the bill about 5 times did even less to endear this place to us - if this is the best Mr Corrigan can do we wont be returning!

Sunday, January 22, 2006
Overall rating 3 stars
Food 4 | Service 2 | Atmosphere 4 | Value for money 1

The Ivy

Forget the celebrities - go to the Ivy for fabulous Steak and Kidney pudding ,Shepherds pie and other simple fare,great value wine list and fabulous desserts - not the best restaurant in London but pretty good and consistent-If you want to see celebs ,buy Hello magazine - if you want good value English food ,go to the Ivy.

Sunday, January 22, 2006
Overall rating 9 stars
Food 9 | Service 8 | Atmosphere 8 | Value for money 9


Very pleasant way to spend a saturday night,kebabs were great esp. the lamb shish which were melt in the mouth gorgeous,lamb chops were Ok but not as great as everyone raves about.The curries were a bit hit and miss ,chicken tikka masala "the house speciality ' was good but the bhuna gosht was slighty bland others suffered slightly from too much fresh ginger ,dont expect to get away for less than £40 per head with just a few drinks- very nice atmosphere and good service though.Not for people who like their Pakistani and Indian food a bit more authentic.

Sunday, January 22, 2006
Overall rating 7 stars
Food 7 | Service 8 | Atmosphere 8 | Value for money 5

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