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Junior G-man
Sep 15, 2004

Bawk Bawk THERAPY CRANES Baaawk!




Hey London types, can you help me out?

I'm going to be in London (staying just NW of Kensington Gardens) in the last week of february for 3 days.

I'm looking for two recommendations; one Indian (my mum's favourite) and one British/pub/gastropub. We're doing the Albert Hall thing on one of the days, so one of the two should (hopefully) be in that sort of area. I don't mind the tube a bit, but walking distance is always nice.

Budgetwise, I'm not too fussed about spending on good food, but no michelin-starred madness or 200 quid bills.

For the last day i'm going to try to get a lunch reservation at Dinner, here's hoping ...

Also, seeing that sweet list of cocktail joints, is there anywhere near Albert Hall that does a good cocktail and is a quiet(!) place where you can take your mother?

Edit: in the interest of doing my own homework, I did a little research and how does this strike:

1. dinner at great queen street pub
2. Pre-theater at Roti Chai
3. Lunch at Dinner by HB

Junior G-man fucked around with this message at Jan 6, 2012 around 21:35

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The_Doctor
Mar 29, 2007

"The entire history of this incarnation is one of temporal orbits, retcons, paradoxes, parallel time lines, reiterations, and divergences. How anyone can make head or tail of all this chaos, I don't know."


Oh awesome, one of my favourite threads is back! I've been meaning to hit up Meat Liquor since it opened.. Maybe tomorrow. And I'll have to try the Hawksmoor since I've apparently walked past it half a dozen times without noticing. Is there any preference on Spitalfields or Seven Dials?

woofay
Dec 12, 2011


i'm poor as hell at the moment since xmas - but i've been craving a bodeans for weeks

Paragon8
Feb 19, 2007



woofay posted:

i'm poor as hell at the moment since xmas - but i've been craving a bodeans for weeks

Waitrose do a line of American BBQ stuff now - the ribs are 4.99 and are melt in the mouth tender. Definitely fills my bodeans fix.

therattle
Jul 24, 2007

I'm a family man - I run a family business. This is my son and my partner, H.W.


Soiled Meat

Junior G-man posted:

Hey London types, can you help me out?

I'm going to be in London (staying just NW of Kensington Gardens) in the last week of february for 3 days.

I'm looking for two recommendations; one Indian (my mum's favourite) and one British/pub/gastropub. We're doing the Albert Hall thing on one of the days, so one of the two should (hopefully) be in that sort of area. I don't mind the tube a bit, but walking distance is always nice.

Budgetwise, I'm not too fussed about spending on good food, but no michelin-starred madness or 200 quid bills.

For the last day i'm going to try to get a lunch reservation at Dinner, here's hoping ...

Also, seeing that sweet list of cocktail joints, is there anywhere near Albert Hall that does a good cocktail and is a quiet(!) place where you can take your mother?

Edit: in the interest of doing my own homework, I did a little research and how does this strike:

1. dinner at great queen street pub
2. Pre-theater at Roti Chai
3. Lunch at Dinner by HB
Not sure about the others but I've recommended Great Queen St before; I really like it.

Had Bodean's beef ribs recently. They were tender enough, but the meat itself lacked flavour.

Senor_Happy
Jun 17, 2005

Oh my god, why did I take the whole bottle of pills?

woofay posted:

i'm poor as hell at the moment since xmas - but i've been craving a bodeans for weeks

Pitt Cue Co opens their new brick and mortar place tomorrow in Soho, if it's in line with the van it'll be cheaper and better than Bodeans.

therattle
Jul 24, 2007

I'm a family man - I run a family business. This is my son and my partner, H.W.


Soiled Meat

Senor_Happy posted:

Pitt Cue Co opens their new brick and mortar place tomorrow in Soho, if it's in line with the van it'll be cheaper and better than Bodeans.

Tell me more! What do they serve, and where is it? Ah. . A bit far for me, but not THAT far - I'll have to check it out. Thanks!

The_Doctor
Mar 29, 2007

"The entire history of this incarnation is one of temporal orbits, retcons, paradoxes, parallel time lines, reiterations, and divergences. How anyone can make head or tail of all this chaos, I don't know."


therattle posted:

Had Bodean's beef ribs recently. They were tender enough, but the meat itself lacked flavour.

That's pretty much my quibble about Bodeans all over. It's good enough, it's just never huge on flavour.

Senor_Happy
Jun 17, 2005

Oh my god, why did I take the whole bottle of pills?

therattle posted:

Tell me more! What do they serve, and where is it? Ah. . A bit far for me, but not THAT far - I'll have to check it out. Thanks!

You can see what they served out the van here; http://bit.ly/yOEVn9 (Sorry for the blog pimping again)

It's mainly fantastic pulled pork and brisket, with whiskey cocktails. If it's anywhere near as good as the one on the South Bank was, it's worth checking out. I hear the Pickleback is a treat that's not to be missed (whiskey chased with pickle brine and a piece of crackling)

pointsofdata
Apr 25, 2011



Ariana II is a great Afghan restaurant in Kilburn. It's bring your own with no corkage and the food is cheap (around 8 for a main). Most of the menu is kebabs of various sorts, but they also do various lamb and mince dishes. If you go, make sure you get a starter as they are great, especially the pumpkin naan.

sharktamer
Oct 30, 2011

Shark tamer ridiculous

Anyone know any good Korean restaurants in the NW area? Been watching some Korean TV shows and the food looks gooooood.

Neris
Mar 7, 2004

don't you dare use the word 'party' as a verb in this shop

sharktamer posted:

Anyone know any good Korean restaurants in the NW area? Been watching some Korean TV shows and the food looks gooooood.

Yes! Seoul is a restaurant that does amazing korean BBQ in Finchley, there's some pics and a write up I did here.
Also, in central there's a cafe called Bibimbap on Greek Street in soho which does great cheap bibimbap (funny that) which is the meat, rice and veg in a hot stone bowl, like £11. So tasty. I totally love Korean food

Spuckuk
Aug 11, 2009

Being a bastard works



The_Doctor posted:

Oh awesome, one of my favourite threads is back! I've been meaning to hit up Meat Liquor since it opened.. Maybe tomorrow.

It's pretty drat fantastic. Amazing burgers, massive portion of chilli cheese fries and great cocktails. I'd reccomend getting there for an early lunch though, the place fills up quick and queues get massive, fast.

The_Doctor
Mar 29, 2007

"The entire history of this incarnation is one of temporal orbits, retcons, paradoxes, parallel time lines, reiterations, and divergences. How anyone can make head or tail of all this chaos, I don't know."


In the spirit of insanity, I'm going to try and go to Pitt Cue's new place tonight.

Neris
Mar 7, 2004

don't you dare use the word 'party' as a verb in this shop

Good luck! At least it's not a weekend or Friday night...

I still haven't been arsed to go to Meateasy. I hate queuing for restaurants with a burning passion.

The_Doctor
Mar 29, 2007

"The entire history of this incarnation is one of temporal orbits, retcons, paradoxes, parallel time lines, reiterations, and divergences. How anyone can make head or tail of all this chaos, I don't know."


Half hour-40 minute wait, currently. Drinking their 'Whatever' own brew beer. Very... Generic.

Oh hey, I didn't press post. Just got out.. Oh god so delicious. I recommend the burnt end mash for a side. I had the special Pulled Pig's Head for 9.50 with brisket for an extra 5. I am so full and sated. The dining area is TINY though. 18 seats total. But yay, so good. I wa sat next to the lady who runs the Londoner food blog.

The_Doctor
Mar 29, 2007

"The entire history of this incarnation is one of temporal orbits, retcons, paradoxes, parallel time lines, reiterations, and divergences. How anyone can make head or tail of all this chaos, I don't know."


Went to Meat Liquor yesterday. Pretty good burgers, but not the best ever like some have claimed. I had a Dead Hippy and my companion had a Mushroom Swiss. What blew us away were the chilli cheese fries, though. So many! So spicy! Between us, we couldn't finish them.

I liked the decor/atmosphere, reminded me of at least 3 different dive-y bars in the US I can think of. The parabolic dome ceiling where you can hear the people 16 ft behind you in perfect clarity like they're standing right next to your ear is very weird. But overall, pretty good. I'd definitely go again.

Bollock Monkey
Jan 21, 2007
The Almighty

It's no fine dining experience and the service can be a bit shoddy when it's busy, but San Marco (a Maps link 'cause they don't have a website) does pretty drat good, comforting Italian food. I usually avoid Italian restaurants because they're never as good as my dad/nonna's versions of the same stuff, but the first time I went here I was pleasantly surprised - I stumbled out of Paddington, starving, and happened upon this place and now I try to make a point of going at least somewhat regularly. Reasonably priced and homely, what more can you ask for with Italian? The garlic mushrooms are the only mushrooms I've ever truly enjoyed, the arrabbiata is bang-on and the carbonara is delicious, too. Plus they don't skimp on the parmesan like so many places do.

Aw, man, I wanna be there right now.

Senor_Happy
Jun 17, 2005

Oh my god, why did I take the whole bottle of pills?

Went to Opera Tavern last Friday night, fantastic location for tapas, if not that cheap. Worth the price of admission for the Iberico Pork and Foie Gras mini burgers, which were little bundles of love. Not so keen on the fishcakes, but there were definitely more extremely good dishes that we had than poor ones. Particularly fond of the stuffed courgette flowers and the generous helpings of fantastic charcuterie

It's also a good location if you're visiting London, right off Covent Garden, making it perfect for visiting pre-theatre.

Also backing up the Pitt Cue Co love once more, good food in the perfect location to fuel up before a days shopping in the centre of town. Had the ribs, burnt end mash, baked beans, sausage and pickles and all were very good for what was an inexpensive meal in an area that's lacking good cheap food. The only problem will be the wait for the next few weeks

Neris
Mar 7, 2004

don't you dare use the word 'party' as a verb in this shop

Oh yeah I've been to the Opera Tavern. I really need to go back on a special occasion and order all the stuff I want! Doing tapas with your other half's family is so awkward with all the sharing...

I kind of want to try the Salt Yard as well.

Incidentally Zucca in Bermondsey has a huge like, back-up long waiting list usually I find with reservations, but finally went in January and it was just so loving good. Lovely wine as well.

therattle
Jul 24, 2007

I'm a family man - I run a family business. This is my son and my partner, H.W.


Soiled Meat

I was in the area yesterday so I went to Pitt Cue Co to pick up a takeaway sandwich. The good: lovely friendly people. The owner had been sold some rum, and there was an open bottle on the counter that he and the staff had been tasting, so he offered me a nip, which warmed me nicely on the cold walk back to the office. However...the food was disappointing. Not in terms of flavour and texture (good), but it was a really small portion of brisket, onions, and slaw served atop a small half bun (no top half). It was literally about 10cm in diameter, and it wasn't like it was absolutely overflowing with topping. I do not have a big appetite, and I always go for quality over quantity, but it was really small - like large hors d'oeuvres size. I could have easily eaten two, and a good 50% more would have made it come close to a satisfying lunch. There wasn't that much brisket on it, and among the meaty pieces were two large pieces of fat. So while I enjoyed the flavour, I felt really unsatisfied by quantity - especially since I had paid 6.50 for it. I don't mind paying for quality (which is why I now go to Koya weekly - not cheap, but awesome), but I REALLY hate feeling like I've been ripped off, and 6.50 for that itty-bitty sandwich felt like a rip-off.

On another note, some colleagues and I had a very good meal at Barrica tapas bar on Goodge St. I thought it was about as good as Salt Yard, but cheaper. Every dish was good to excellent.

reality_groove
Dec 27, 2007



Went to Goya in Pimlico recently. Really good authentic tapas, very generous portions.

RazorBunny
May 23, 2007

Sometimes I feel like this.



My husband and I are planning a trip to London in the summer, and I've definitely bookmarked this thread as part of my prep Neither of us has ever been to the UK.

I did have one specific question: are there any particular pubs or restaurants that you'd recommend for getting really good hard ciders and/or ginger beer (either the alcoholic or non-alcoholic variety). We've tried the majority of the brands that get imported into the US. It doesn't have to be an in-house brew, though that would be even better, just places that have really good brands on tap.

He likes some of the sweeter ciders, but I prefer dry.

We can get Strongbow (my personal favorite), Blackthorn, and Magner's (which I know is made in Ireland ), and there are lots of really good American brands popping up, but I've always heard that there's a lot more to be had in England. I think there's only one ginger beer from the UK available here, Idris, which neither of us really liked, but I'd be interested to try other brands and in-house brews.

reality_groove
Dec 27, 2007



RazorBunny posted:

My husband and I are planning a trip to London in the summer, and I've definitely bookmarked this thread as part of my prep Neither of us has ever been to the UK.

I did have one specific question: are there any particular pubs or restaurants that you'd recommend for getting really good hard ciders and/or ginger beer (either the alcoholic or non-alcoholic variety). We've tried the majority of the brands that get imported into the US. It doesn't have to be an in-house brew, though that would be even better, just places that have really good brands on tap.

Southampton Arms on Highgate Road is good for real ales and ciders. I'd guess Porterhouse Covent Garden would have a range too...


Had a cheap and cheerful dinner at Little Bay in Farringdon. Half price off all food (excluding specials) at the moment, meaning you can easily get 3 courses for around a tenner. It lacks finesse and definitely not somewhere you'd take someone you're trying to impress, but there's nothing overtly offensive about it.

therattle
Jul 24, 2007

I'm a family man - I run a family business. This is my son and my partner, H.W.


Soiled Meat

RazorBunny posted:

My husband and I are planning a trip to London in the summer, and I've definitely bookmarked this thread as part of my prep Neither of us has ever been to the UK.

I did have one specific question: are there any particular pubs or restaurants that you'd recommend for getting really good hard ciders and/or ginger beer (either the alcoholic or non-alcoholic variety). We've tried the majority of the brands that get imported into the US. It doesn't have to be an in-house brew, though that would be even better, just places that have really good brands on tap.

He likes some of the sweeter ciders, but I prefer dry.

We can get Strongbow (my personal favorite), Blackthorn, and Magner's (which I know is made in Ireland ), and there are lots of really good American brands popping up, but I've always heard that there's a lot more to be had in England. I think there's only one ginger beer from the UK available here, Idris, which neither of us really liked, but I'd be interested to try other brands and in-house brews.

I'm not much of a cider drinker but I always understood those brands you listed to be part of the mainstream, the UK cider equivalent of a Miller or Bud. I am sure you could get better here. I think Aspall's does one, which is probably pretty good if their vinegar is anything to go by.

This looks like a good centrally-located pub with a wide variety of ciders.
http://www.viewlondon.co.uk/pubsand...info-12054.html

Or, y'know, you could do a 2-second google search for london pubs cider and get this:
http://www.ukcider.co.uk/wiki/index...Guide_to_London

Neris
Mar 7, 2004

don't you dare use the word 'party' as a verb in this shop

RazorBunny posted:

We can get Strongbow (my personal favorite), Blackthorn, and Magner's (which I know is made in Ireland ), and there are lots of really good American brands popping up, but I've always heard that there's a lot more to be had in England. I think there's only one ginger beer from the UK available here, Idris, which neither of us really liked, but I'd be interested to try other brands and in-house brews.

I like the sweet ciders that you've just listed - but as therattle mentioned, they are not really considered to be nice, good ciders. Strongbow in particular is pretty cheap and chavvy and far down the list - though I'm not a snob about it and definitely drink plenty of the stuff, and if I'm going to a festival I'll be bringing a case of it. If your husband likes them sweeter than Magners, make him have some Kopperberg or Rekorderlig. They are both WAY too sweet for me to drink, especially Kopperberg, ick. Make sure you both try Crabbies - alcoholic ginger beer and it is loving lovely.

I actually kind of suck because there are a LOT of really excellent proper cloudy ciders out there, that people really rate, but I hate them. They are way too sour and alcoholic for me and I cannot drink more than a small glass of them.

But in any case, the Green Man is well known for having a BUNCH of ciders on tap. The Southampton Arms is just up from where I work and will delight you with how small, quaint and British it is. Go for a nice walk on Hampstead Heath first, up to Parliament Hill.

Spuckuk
Aug 11, 2009

Being a bastard works



http://www.masonandtaylor.co.uk/

Has a good selection of Cider squirreled away behind the bar (in proper plastic jugs no less). It's near Hoxton, so it's likely full of wankers at any given weekend though..

Spuckuk
Aug 11, 2009

Being a bastard works



Neris posted:



But in any case, the Green Man is well known for having a BUNCH of ciders on tap.

My missus was a barmaid there, cracking pub.

The_Doctor
Mar 29, 2007

"The entire history of this incarnation is one of temporal orbits, retcons, paradoxes, parallel time lines, reiterations, and divergences. How anyone can make head or tail of all this chaos, I don't know."


reality_groove posted:

Had a cheap and cheerful dinner at Little Bay in Farringdon. Half price off all food (excluding specials) at the moment, meaning you can easily get 3 courses for around a tenner. It lacks finesse and definitely not somewhere you'd take someone you're trying to impress, but there's nothing overtly offensive about it.

My family and I go to the one in Kilburn on a fairly regular basis, and we always like it. The Battersea one was best before it burnt down.

EDIT: I just tried to go to their site, but I'm on my iPhone. Death to restaurant websites built entirely with Flash.

The_Doctor fucked around with this message at Feb 2, 2012 around 11:51

NLJP
Aug 26, 2004




RazorBunny posted:

My husband and I are planning a trip to London in the summer, and I've definitely bookmarked this thread as part of my prep Neither of us has ever been to the UK.

I did have one specific question: are there any particular pubs or restaurants that you'd recommend for getting really good hard ciders and/or ginger beer (either the alcoholic or non-alcoholic variety). We've tried the majority of the brands that get imported into the US. It doesn't have to be an in-house brew, though that would be even better, just places that have really good brands on tap.

He likes some of the sweeter ciders, but I prefer dry.

We can get Strongbow (my personal favorite), Blackthorn, and Magner's (which I know is made in Ireland ), and there are lots of really good American brands popping up, but I've always heard that there's a lot more to be had in England. I think there's only one ginger beer from the UK available here, Idris, which neither of us really liked, but I'd be interested to try other brands and in-house brews.

The Euston Tap/Cider Tap is fun. Just outside Euston railway station in a pair of tiny old Royal Mail sorting houses. Last night was the first time I went but it was very pleasant but you'll probably have to stand. A dozen or so regional ciders with very friendly staff while at the Euston Tap opposite there's dozens upon dozens of bottled beers and another ten or so on tap. Had a great perry and fantastic bitter.

There's a great Sichuan place called Chili Cool about 10 minutes away too. It was a good evening

RazorBunny
May 23, 2007

Sometimes I feel like this.



Oh, I was never under the impression that those were truly excellent ciders, they're just the only ones we can get here in the States. Strongbow isn't my favorite cider overall, just the one I like best of the UK brands. I can definitely believe that it's in the same class as Bud. We get a couple of pear ciders here too, but I'm not too into those.

There are some really classy ciders made here, but we're just really not a hard cider culture in the US. Hardly any places have them in bottles, let alone on tap. I don't know why, but cider has been largely ignored in the big microbrew and homebrew trend. There are bars here that have a hundred beers, and not a single cider.

therattle, I saw that page, but I don't really trust wikis for food and drink recommendations - I've been led astray a few times. If actual Londoners agree with the listings there, though, I'll definitely take that list under advisement.

I looked at the Crabbie's website, I guess it's sold pretty commonly? Good to know we won't have to hunt for it, if they carry it at Tesco. But wow is their site obnoxious.

Neris, I actually like a lot of the cloudy ciders I've tried, so I'll look into that as well. There's a really good scrumpy available here called JK's, but it's mostly sold at barbecue joints for some reason.

Thanks for the tips, I'm really looking forward to exploring the food and drink scene in London. We're trying hard not to be too annoying and touristy - we live near Washington, DC and we know how much of a pain in the rear end tourists can be - and we're planning on leaving before the crowd for the Olympics shows up. I do want to see the dinosaurs in Crystal Palace Park though

pointsofdata
Apr 25, 2011



NLJP posted:

There's a great Sichuan place called Chili Cool about 10 minutes away too. It was a good evening
I second Chili Cool, great restaurant. It's also right next door to the shop used as the storefront for "Black Books" if you're into that.

powertoiletduck
Feb 19, 2004

dance dance dance

NLJP posted:

The Euston Tap/Cider Tap is fun. Just outside Euston railway station in a pair of tiny old Royal Mail sorting houses. Last night was the first time I went but it was very pleasant but you'll probably have to stand. A dozen or so regional ciders with very friendly staff while at the Euston Tap opposite there's dozens upon dozens of bottled beers and another ten or so on tap. Had a great perry and fantastic bitter.

There's a great Sichuan place called Chili Cool about 10 minutes away too. It was a good evening

The Euston/Cider Tap and the Bree Louise (linked earlier) are about a 5 minute walk away from each other, so ideal for cider/real ale drinkers.

Lady Gaza
Nov 20, 2008



powertoiletduck posted:

The Euston/Cider Tap and the Bree Louise (linked earlier) are about a 5 minute walk away from each other, so ideal for cider/real ale drinkers.

I think the Bree has gone downhill lately, last few times I've been I've found their beer disgusting. Not a fan of the Tap either, it's always rammed and there are better pubs for ale. I'd recommend the Harp near Trafalgar Square. It gets busy too but their selection is amazing.

Neris
Mar 7, 2004

don't you dare use the word 'party' as a verb in this shop

pointsofdata posted:

I second Chili Cool, great restaurant. It's also right next door to the shop used as the storefront for "Black Books" if you're into that.

Jesus. How did I not know this? :o

Lady Gaza
Nov 20, 2008



I went to Chili Cool after I came back from China to get some decent Sichuan food, and it definitely was good. I had some lamb skewers which were the spiciest thing I've ever eaten. Unfortunately I somehow ordered tripe or something, which almost made me throw up.

edit: not complaining about the restaurant, I just hate eating stomach lining

Lady Gaza fucked around with this message at Feb 3, 2012 around 11:42

Neris
Mar 7, 2004

don't you dare use the word 'party' as a verb in this shop

I think I ordered pasta with tripe in Bocca Di Lupo and it was actually excellent. That's the problem with offal though - unless it's done perfectly the first time you have it you'll be put off forever. That said I probably will always probably be a bit fussy about liver and kidneys. (That's where the stuff that's in your piss is made, etc. )


But it's kind of like with squid/calamari. Took me ages to realise that when it's done well, you won't have to chew it for half an hour.

Lady Gaza
Nov 20, 2008



Neris posted:

I think I ordered pasta with tripe in Bocca Di Lupo and it was actually excellent. That's the problem with offal though - unless it's done perfectly the first time you have it you'll be put off forever. That said I probably will always probably be a bit fussy about liver and kidneys. (That's where the stuff that's in your piss is made, etc. )


But it's kind of like with squid/calamari. Took me ages to realise that when it's done well, you won't have to chew it for half an hour.

Yeah I think it wasn't done very well too. It was just pieces of tripe swimming in a really bright orange oil, bleurgh it makes me feel sick thinking about it. Lamb was amazing though so more than made up for it.

sc0tty
Jan 8, 2005

too kewell for school..

http://www.thebullislington.co.uk/

The Bull (Angel) usually has about 5 or 6 different ciders on tap and also has loads of great beer on tap (and ales as well). One of my favorite pubs around at the moment.

My favourite cider though is the stuff you get at Borough markets from these guys (http://www.boroughmarket.org.uk/pag...Forest-Cider/72). First time I had it I wasn't impressed, but while I was unemployed I was there twice a week. Cider + Duck roll was amazing.

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pointsofdata
Apr 25, 2011



Neris posted:

Jesus. How did I not know this? :o

It's great. It's actually a bookshop in real life specialising in old books, a bit messy with a very chilled out shopkeeper. I suspect that they are only still in business because of Black Books.

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