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London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 1st, 2019, 8:23 pm
by RyanC
I'm going to have one or two nights free in London this month while traveling on business. I'd love to get a great meal or two and I'll probably be solo -- preferably dining at the bar or a counter. I have no real preference for type of food, fancy or not fancy, or neighborhood (within reason). Just looking for something distinctive and great (and where I will likely be able to get a seat with 2-3 weeks notice). Thoughts / recommendations? Thanks!

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 1st, 2019, 9:00 pm
by Russell Faulkner
Araki or Hedone.

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 1st, 2019, 9:28 pm
by M.Kaplan
Kitchen Table is my favorite (book well in advance)
Barrafina for tapas (no reservations, but well worth the wait)
Kiln Soho
Roka Fitzrovia

Countless good solo dining opportunities in London.

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 1st, 2019, 9:46 pm
by Russell Faulkner
[highfive.gif] Closed at the moment Mark (until June) Have you been to Hedone?

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 1st, 2019, 9:53 pm
by M.Kaplan
Kitchen Table is closed (they are remodeling Bubbledogs and Sandia Chang and James Knappett had a baby girl yesterday). I overlooked Ryan’s time frame.

Yes, I like Hedone quite a lot. The owner/chef is a bit of a weird guy, but I like his cooking very much. Been twice.

Also, the communal table downstairs at Nopi is another good choice.

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 2nd, 2019, 7:51 pm
by dbailey
Atelier de Joel Robuchon is perfect for solo dining with most of the tables at the bar

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 3rd, 2019, 4:41 am
by Rajesh P a r i k h
Dishoom

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 3rd, 2019, 5:01 am
by Mich@el Ch@ng
Hide upper

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 3rd, 2019, 5:27 am
by Mark Golodetz
My two favorite restaurants are very different, and both unique.

I love the really inspired Indian food at Cinammon Club. Incredibly creative and the the food is delicious. If you are into wine with spice, an interesting wine list.

St.John’s is a real English treasure, and brings a lot of the slightly off cuts of meat into sharp focus. My go to are marrow bones and a special last time, steak and kidney pie If you are an offal fan, this place is a must. Not sure about wine list, as I was a guest of some wine merchants last couple of times I was there. But there is a wine company attached, so probably good.

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 3rd, 2019, 10:07 am
by Barry L i p t o n
My absolute favorite is Pollen Street Social if you don't want a long meal, otherwise Kitchen Table is the best (but currently closed).

I prefer Dishoom to Cinnamon Club - I don't like modern Indian food (as defined by including mayonaisse in some of the dishes). Lot's of variety although casual and not refined. A big appeal is it's location, perfect for pre-theater. I was only at C.C. once so I might be able to avoid the mayo next time. Talli Joe is also right by the theater district and perhaps a hair better than Dishoom without as much variety.

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 3rd, 2019, 3:13 pm
by Robert Broder
Been to St. John's and Pollen Street Social. I thought Pollen Street was very good, but not worth the money. St. John's was special. Still remember. The roasted bone marrow and roast ox heart. My favorite meal, however, is at J. Sheekey. The last 2 visits to London I had the shellfish tower, and I still dream about it.

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 3rd, 2019, 3:38 pm
by RyanC
Thanks everyone. Great recs. I've been to St. John and loved it. I've also been to J. Sheekey and loved it as well.

I'm very intrigued by Araki, and it would have been a no-brainer, but I see that Araki has left the restaurant as of March and now his assistant is in charge. Unless I hear a great report from the past few weeks, I'm reticent to go that route with a new chef at the helm. Anyone have intel to give me confidence in the new guy?

Hedone, Kiln Dishoom, Atelier, and Cinnamon Club are great suggestions. As of now I'm thinking I'll go Hedone for at least one night.

Keep 'em coming.

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 3rd, 2019, 6:41 pm
by Russell Faulkner
It’s not really a new chef at Araki. It’s his assistant who has been there for the whole time he was in London. I wouldn’t hesitate.

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 3rd, 2019, 7:06 pm
by doug johnson
I'll be that guy....my one time at Hedone was garbage. Good ingredients, yes, but the cooking had no soul, no creativity, no style.

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 3rd, 2019, 8:33 pm
by Stephen Pepe
Enoteca Turi at 87 Pimlico Rd. We had lunch there today. Excellent Italian wine list. Very creative Italian dishes.

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 4th, 2019, 6:12 am
by Rajesh P a r i k h
Mich@el Ch@ng wrote:
April 3rd, 2019, 5:01 am
Hide upper
Thanks for the rec! Just booked Hide for the next time I'm in London. Did you try the cocktail bar downstairs?

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 4th, 2019, 6:47 am
by Mich@el Ch@ng
I haven’t personally but heard it’s really cool.

Detailed review from KJJ here

viewtopic.php?f=6&t=155178&p=2598639&hi ... n#p2598639

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 12th, 2019, 5:38 am
by Mark R
I focus on local/regional food when I travel, and there's nothing more "London" than a Sunday Roast (with yorkshire pudding and all the trimmings), the best example of which I had at Blacklock (24 Great Windmill Street), which was also the best meal I had in my 8 days in the city at this time last year. Blacklock also won the award for best roast from local publications (I recall including 'Time Out'), and they have a great deal on Mondays also. Reservations on OpenTable.

London is also known as one of the best places for Indian food, so keep that in mind. You will likely find yourself in Covent Garden at some point, and one of the best no-reservation places there is Dishoom (22 Kingly Street). For more upscale with an easy-to-secure lunch reservation is Gymkhana (expensive at dinner but affordable lunch deals at a Michelin-starred establishment).

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 14th, 2019, 10:13 am
by Paul McCourt
Mark R wrote:
April 12th, 2019, 5:38 am
I focus on local/regional food when I travel, and there's nothing more "London" than a Sunday Roast (with yorkshire pudding and all the trimmings), the best example of which I had at Blacklock (24 Great Windmill Street), which was also the best meal I had in my 8 days in the city at this time last year. Blacklock also won the award for best roast from local publications (I recall including 'Time Out'), and they have a great deal on Mondays also. Reservations on OpenTable.

London is also known as one of the best places for Indian food, so keep that in mind. You will likely find yourself in Covent Garden at some point, and one of the best no-reservation places there is Dishoom (22 Kingly Street). For more upscale with an easy-to-secure lunch reservation is Gymkhana (expensive at dinner but affordable lunch deals at a Michelin-starred establishment).
There are a couple of Dishoom's in London, correct?

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 15th, 2019, 5:47 am
by Mark R
Paul McCourt wrote:
April 14th, 2019, 10:13 am

There are a couple of Dishoom's in London, correct?
Evidently, there are 5 in London, and they've spread outside to Manchester and Edinburgh.
All addresses at http://www.dishoom.com/
Because they only take reservations for large groups, it's a good option for a solo diner, as described in the OP.

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 16th, 2019, 1:42 pm
by David Kaufman
+1 for Barrafina, especially as a solo diner

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 16th, 2019, 7:57 pm
by Barry L i p t o n
Dishoom takes reservations until 5:30. Perfect for pre theater.

Re: London / Solo Diner

Posted: April 17th, 2019, 1:30 pm
by Keith A k e r s
David Kaufman wrote:
April 16th, 2019, 1:42 pm
+1 for Barrafina, especially as a solo diner
^this.was.sooooooooooooooo friggin good when I went two weeks ago. So, yea, that champagne.gif


I would also fully rec a visit to the Clove Club. I was extremely happy with my meal there