Annual: Top 10 restaurants
campaignlive.co.uk, Friday, 12 December 2008 12:00AM
Lunching at Scott's is a simply breathtaking experience. The menu boasts an exquisite combination of both simple and indulgent dishes (if undecided, go for the shellfish cocktail, you won't be disappointed), while the wine list is growing stronger every week. The atmosphere is wonderfully British, and don't be surprised to see a whole host of A-Listers during your visit.
2. The Ivy Club
The new place to be seen. The food is just as good as it is next door (though service can be slow), but it's the atmosphere and exclusivity that sets this place apart. With comfy leather chairs, intimate lighting and the most lavish entrance hall you'll have ever seen, the hype is justified.
3. River Cafe
Rising from the flames (the restaurant has only recently reopened after a fire), the River Cafe is still a top-class dining experience. Credit should go to any establishment that can make Hammersmith seem attractive, while the staff are attentive without being pushy. The menu hasn't changed much since the refurbishment, and thankfully neither has the quality of the food.
Roka or Zuma? The quality of both ensures they both make it on to the list, but Roka nabs a higher spot thanks to its prime adland location. We could go on all day about the fantastic sushi on offer, but it's the dishes cooked on the robata grill that really sets this place apart. Such is the quality of the food that it'll be difficult to find a dish that isn't great, but if you really are stuck, then don't hesitate to ask the clued-up waiters, who will never fail to help out.
5. St Alban
Following a meteoric rise to the top, St Alban still manages to deliver simple and common (in the nicest sense of the word) dishes that are ludicrously tasty. The modern menu complements the atmosphere well, and you'd be hard pushed to find a better stone-baked pizza on offer anywhere in London.
6. The Wolseley
Lavishly decorated with brilliant service, The Wolseley is an iconic restaurant that offers an equally memorable experience whatever meal you go for. Its breakfast menu is perhaps where it excels the most, and although the sound of fried haggis and duck eggs may be a little too ambitious for some, the restaurant's signature dish really needs to be tasted to be believed.
7. J Sheekey
A good, hearty fish restaurant that offers a fun and friendly atmosphere, J Sheekey is a theatreland classic. The restaurant's fish pie is famous the world over and for good reason, and don't be surprised to be tucking into it next to a celeb or two. The recently opened oyster bar situated adjacent to the restaurant is another welcome addition.
Located just a stone's throw away from Harrods, Zuma is a sushi-lover's dream. The open-plan layout helps to create a real buzz, and the service is relaxed and helpful. This is the Campaign editor's favourite lunchtime eatery, and with food this good, you can understand why.
9. L'Atelier de Joel Robuchon
It may be impossible to pronounce, especially after a few glasses from the restaurant's solid wine list, but you only need one intense dining experience here and you'll be desperate to return. The main courses are a meat lover's dream, while the desserts (the Chartreuse souffle, in particular) are divine.
10. La Petite Maison
Bringing a taste of southern France to Mayfair, La Petite Maison provides a stylish dining experience. The atmosphere is light and airy, which helps it to avoid appearing snobbish like so many Mayfair eateries. A romantic's dream.
This article was first published on campaignlive.co.uk
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