Category Archives: Restaurants

Holborn Dining Room review: adds class to commuterville

The traffic-and-commuter-saturated High Holborn usually has little to recommend it, being full of gridlocked buses and office workers doing the twice-daily rat run to and from the tube.

But an grand oasis of opulent charm and fine dining has just arrived and is well worth putting off the journey home for.

Holborn Dining Room, which opened just a few weeks ago, is located the old Pearl Assurance building, so it has all the high-ceiling’d formal grandeur of a former financial institution complete with marbled pillars.

Holborn Dining Room
An improvement on an insurer’s offices, the building on High Holborn is 100 years old this year

In the far corner is the Holborn Delicatessen, open during the day for coffee, pastries and high-end deliciousnesses, while in the restaurant itself is a deli-style counter complete with hanging salamis and people busily slicing away at hunks of cured meat. Continue reading Holborn Dining Room review: adds class to commuterville

Cannizaro House Wimbledon: a country retreat in the city

Cannizaro House Wimbledon
Cannizaro House in Wimbledon. Sadly that isn’t my car.

There is something rather delightful about packing to spend the weekend in a hotel just four miles from your home.

It yields all the excitement and anticipation of a trip away without any of the angst and despair caused by realising you have to drive across London in the rush hour and then get snarled up on the Hammersmith flyover.

And the journey home! Many a relaxing weekend away has been ruined by roadworks on the M1, a lane closure on the A3, the sheer awfulness of driving through Wandsworth on a Sunday evening.

So to do away with all that unnecessary travelling seems to me to be utterly sensible.

Some would not agree. I recently had lunch with a tour operator who maintained that half the fun of a holiday is the fact you have to travel to get there, thus giving you a sense of achievement and new territories gained when you arrived at your destination.

To which I merely said ‘the journey home’ and ‘the South Circular’ and he paled and said I might have a point. Continue reading Cannizaro House Wimbledon: a country retreat in the city

Gordon Ramsay London House Battersea review

gordon ramsay london house battersea square
The bar staff at London House had designed some wonderful cocktails which were a perfect start to the evening

Any business owner will tell you that it’s vital to get the local residents on side right from the very beginning to ensure success.

And Gordon Ramsay did just that with the newest restaurant in his empire, London House in Battersea Square.

Officially opening on Tuesday 4 February, London House treated local residents to its modern European cooking and fine wines for three days over the weekend beforehand.

This gave the restaurant’s managers the chance to woo the locals but also to give the front of house and kitchen staff a chance to iron out any last minute hiccups before the paying customers – and restaurant critics – descended. Continue reading Gordon Ramsay London House Battersea review

TGI Fridays Karen Forrester on how she turned the company around

karen forrester interview TGI Fridays

Under Karen Forrester, the TGI Friday’s restaurant chain has undergone a big recovery – and it all began with a fire that gutted one of its flagship sites.

While most bosses would consider this an unmitigated disaster, Forrester saw the destruction of TGI Friday’s restaurant in Birmingham as a chance to start again. Continue reading TGI Fridays Karen Forrester on how she turned the company around