Sat - Personally I have never been to Brockley Mkt so can't comment but is there any reason in particular why you have chosen to go there rather than one of the more central markets?
Casse Croute is good for low key traditional French - you could maybe combine with a snack at Jose across the road for some tapas and a drink which is really good fun.
Sunday - Depending on your plans for the day maybe you could do a Sunday Lunch at the B&L rather than dinner? It's definitely worth a visit and you could combine with a walk across Hampstead Heath from Hampstead Village. I love A&H but if youve been there plenty then good to branch out. In a similar vein, the Harwood Arms in Fulham is my favourite posh-pub. Slightly more refined than B&L.
Monday - So many choices in Soho/CG - is there a particular food type you wanted to try? Koya do very good Udon noodles or Bone Daddies is my favourite for Ramen though maybe not a priority for you being from NYC.
Thurs - I haven't been to Honey & Co so will leave someone else to comment
Friday - Market on Parkway is pretty good or Made in Camden in the Roundhouse also a good option. I'm not sure if they will be open that late though and I'd say most gigs around there finish more like 10 30/11 than 10. Perhaps food before the gig and then drinks after would be easier?
Conversely to Harters I would say there are actually now loads of places with bar seating- my other half and I are also big fans of this style of seating.
Off the top of my head, some places I'd unreservedly recommend with such seating are:
Barrafina- soho tapas
To be honest there are many options - if you can narrow down with what food/area/price range you are after then I can offer some better tips
Thanks Elizabeth - good to be realistic with these things! Nothing is too fixed on that day so will just have to play it by ear and keep our fingers crossed.
Thanks zeeEats - Perla is definitely an option. We enjoyed Babbo/L'Artusi last time and the menu looks similar so good be a good call
Thanks UES Mayor - that's useful to know. We went to Kin Shop last summer at the board's recommendation and absolutely loved it but will probably want to try something new this time. We may keep that Sat night flexible and see where we end up out of some of the local options (there seem to be quite a few).
General question that may not be possible to answer but are places (such as Chez Sardine/Charlie Bird et al) generally ok to walk into late at night (11ish) or can you still expect long waits?
Thanks Kathryn - incredibly helpful as always!
> Late Lunch – Minetta Tavern for French Dip / Black Label burger before heading up to Central Park for ice skating on the Wollman Rink. Then factoring in some nap time with the jet lag before...
That's kind of a heavy lunch so I definitely see the need for nap time! Also note that MT might be a bit crowded during brunch if you get there on the later side -- you might end up waiting for a bar seat. Though I do understand not wanting to make a reservation given that you'll be coming in from the airport that day (and I guess you're also going through customs?).
----- Thanks, would that be overkill if we had both the French Dip and the burger? Best to share one or the other? Happy to wait for a bar seat or may try to make a 2 30 reservation and play it by ear.
> Dinner – Chez Sardine – I see some mixed reviews but the casual vibe and proximity to our apartment (50 yards down the road) make this appealing for day 1 whilst probably tired.
The wait might be long here, you might also want to try Fedora (sister restaurant literally around the corner). The cocktails at Fedora are pretty good.
----- Thanks, we went to Fedora last time and loved it for drinks. Wallflower also looks cool. Are waits for places like Sardine bad at weekends even when late, like 11pm or so?
Also it seems like a LOT of going uptown and then back down again. The 5th Avenue shopping area (E 50s) is really not that far from the MoMA or where Wollman Rink is located in Central Park.
----- We are staying downtown so my general ‘strategy’ is a brunch or breakfast downtown before heading uptown for the Christmas shopping etc and then back downtown in the evening
> Dinner – Acme / Pearl & Ash / Charlie Bird or something with similar vibe –any preferences from anyone?
I really like Pearl & Ash but it's more of a wine destination in terms of drinks. They don't have a hard liquor license, I don't think.
------- Thanks – so would P&A be your choice out of those?
> We are flying out of Newark at 10pm so was thinking of an early (4/5pm) dinner at the NoMad – do you think this could work? Would there be much atmosphere?
The NoMad doesn't serve dinner that early. I think they only start dinner service at 5:30pm. Maybe grab a drink at the bar beforehand until your dinner reservation? The bar at the NoMad gets a healthy after-work crowd.
------ Yup, you’re right, thanks. Could be a tricky one for timing as will probably have to set off for the airport around 6pm. I think maybe a late 2pm lunch could be the best bet...
Thanks Riverman500, looks like some good options there - will check them out
Further to my last thread (http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/910223) in which I somewhat over enthusiastically planned my eating a good 5 months before travelling, it is now a couple weeks before reservations open for the time I am in NYC so time to finalise my eating... my thoughts are below – any comments/different suggestions would be great.
We are from London and did a fair bit of grazing in NYC last summer so some of the classic spots like Katz/R&D/Shake Shack/EMP/Babbo/Keste are already covered. Our budget in general is mid range so, apart from Ko, we are not looking for any blow-out 3* meals.
Our itinerary is looking like....
- Saturday (land in Newark 12pm so hoping to be in West Village by 2pm)
Late Lunch – Minetta Tavern for French Dip / Black Label burger before heading up to Central Park for ice skating on the Wollman Rink. Then factoring in some nap time with the jet lag before...
Dinner – Chez Sardine – I see some mixed reviews but the casual vibe and proximity to our apartment (50 yards down the road) make this appealing for day 1 whilst probably tired.
Brunch – Balthazar before heading up to 5th Ave etc for Christmas shopping.
Dinner – Momofuku Ko / NoMad – this is dependent on whether Ko is open as I hear its going to be moving location around then- pretty gutting as this is my number one place to go on this trip!
Breakfast – Locanda Verde before heading to museums
Lunch – Ma Peche if needed
Dinner – Williamsburg – Brooklyn Brewery tour before dinner. Struggling to decide on somewhere for this. Was thinking of Traif/Diner/Gwynett Street/Fette Sau. Any suggestions for something quite fun, quite hipster (may as well get stuck into the Williamsburg cliché whilst there for one night)
Shopping downtown in the morning
Lunch – Mission Chinese before heading to the LES Tenement Museum
Dinner – Acme / Pearl & Ash / Charlie Bird or something with similar vibe –any preferences from anyone?
Breakfast – undecided– any suggestions? Have been to the Dutch / Breslin before so less keen on those
We are flying out of Newark at 10pm so was thinking of an early (4/5pm) dinner at the NoMad – do you think this could work? Would there be much atmosphere?
- Where are the best Christmas markets to go to – Bryant Park?
Real helpful there mate..
Diner sounds like a good call. I'm a big LCD Soundsystem fan so Marlow&Sons is a bit of a pilgrimage - maybe a drink or two there and then dinner at Diner could work.
I'm getting a lot of recommendations for Minetta - the menu doesn't interest me hugely, looking to be pretty standard french bistro fare but it sounds like the buzz and quality could make it worth a visit
No offence taken on the tourist comment - I am keen to avoid the same thing in my home town so know the feeling! And yup, have been to Pirata des tapas - good though I prefer Barrafina (give it a visit if you come over again).
Sushi is probably a good call but I find most decent places can be fairly sobre in atmosphere which isnt what I am after on this trip..
Thanks for all the other suggestions too!
Thanks Kathryn - as always your comments are very helpful!
It looks like there could be some other interesting openings like Ivan Ramen before we get there so will keep an eye out for reviews...
Is Grand Central still worth going to even if only for Oysters? i.e. is it a spectacle enough to put an eating slot on?
Any thoughts from anyone else regarding the atmosphere at Momokfuku Ko / Atera / Jungsik?
A little early in the day but I am planning my next trip to NYC and wanted to get some input. I have been a couple times during the summer but this is my first time during the Christmas season (we are there 14-18 December).
We are staying in West Village and are primarily there to soak up the Christmas spirit and vibes. We are late 20s from London so are used to living in a big city with a wide range of food.
Last time we
Loved: L'Artusi, Kin Shop, Breslin, Spotted Pig, Babbo, Keste
I think a common theme to the meals we enjoyed was a buzzy atmosphere, informal setting and bar seating. Another dimension for this trip is to find some places which are 'christmassy'! I am a bit of a sucker for the festive season so would love a few places which would tick the box of being generally cozy/christmassy/new yorky etc etc
A result of the weather will be that we are more keen on longer sit down lunches/dinners rather than grabbing some food from shake shack/russ & daughters etc to sit down somewhere with.
We have done most of the touristy stuff already so no need to be in particular areas.
So far I am thinking a definite dinner at NoMad and potential dinners at:
I had been considering:
- Momofuku Ko - love the idea of the food and the setting but slightly nervous of some of the reports of surly service and also potential lack of atmosphere...
Potential brunch/Lunches at:
- Locanda Verde
Any other good brunch spots? We like slightly unusual brunches with interesting twists/fusions
Any tips/recommendations would be welcomed and I promise a write up!
Hey - what did you end up going for? Hope you had a good trip!
Hi - I used to live nearish the Surprise - it's a decent posh pub and in a nice location, I never ate there and wouldn't describe it as a gastronomic destination at all but i'm sure it will do a half decent job and is probably a cut above the average chain pub around London but maybe not by a huge margin.
If you are not too fussy about being blown away then I'd say go for it though I'd say my preference would always be to buy in some supplies and have christmas lunch in and go out for your christmas eve when you'll have wider options (though i am sure you have already thought this through yourself!)
Ps staying in Chelsea you're in a great location for a Christmas Day morning stroll around Hyde Park - I'm sure it will be lovely!
I'd second the recomemndation for Skylon - good cocktails and view. If the weather is looking good and you want to be outside then the bars outside the royal festival hall (elevated above the main southbank walk way near the london eye) are not flash but offer great views and are usually buzzy.
Also a big of fan of Marks Bar in Soho. Bob Bob Ricard also has a decent bar in the basement.
Dean Street Townhouse in Soho also offers good cocktails and a few tables outside or, just across the street, Quo Vadis is also worth a look.
Good work there - some really nice places you're checking out!
Borough Market - the Chorizo roll from Brindisa is great. Rather than going to the Roast Restaurant I would get one of their baguettes from their stall though to be honest, its meant to be seriously hot at the weekend and so not sure you'll fancy some heavy roast meat! The fish stall has some decent enough currys/paella though to be honest i find BM better for its produce to buy than the food on offer. Make sure you pop around the corner to Neals Yard for some British Cheese and Monmouth coffee (if you can stand the queue)
I would advise finding an alternative to St John/St John B&W as once is probably enough for such a short trip and there are plenty of other places which will add some more variety to the trip.
I would perhaps try somewhere in Soho as it's a fairly key area of London you have missed out and is one of the real hot spots for restauratns at the moment. Since tapas isn't on your hit list I won't press Barrafina (probably my favourite all rounder restaurant in London) but there are lots of others worth checking out like:
- Bocca di Lupo (my favourite Italian)
If you go for that then you could have some drinks on South Bank (towards the London Eye outside royal festival hall) down from the Tate Modern and then walk across the river at sunset in to the West End - can be magical (if crowded) on a sunny day.
Sunday lunch - Bull and Last is good but it depends if you want to go that far out of town. Since its meant to be a (rare) lovely day, if you are keen, I would get the tube to Hampstead (northern line) and then walk through Hampstead Village (very idylic part of the city), across Hampstead Heath (vast wild parkland - very scenic with views across the city from Parliament Hill) to the east side where B&L is.
If you don't keep B&L I would have said Harwood Arms but you already have that covered so excellent choice! Other options, since its going to be sunny, could be to head over to Colombia Road flower market in East London which is great for people watching and a wander with a coffee (go early as gets rammed) and then lunch at Brawn which is one of my favourite French/British bistros that does a good set sunday lunch. Could combine with a wander down Brick Lane if you can face the crowds. Don't be tempted to get a curry on Brick Lane - if you end up wanting something then walk 10mins to New Tayyabs near Whitechapel Station
Monday Lunch - any preference on area? You could go explore some of West london or wander around Marylebone which is central and picturesque - on the high street is Providores for some good brunch or Trishna for some mid/high level Indian (others on this board are way more qualified for Asian recommendations however). If in the area check out La Fromagerie for some of the city's best cheese.
Tuesday - Pollen St/Hedone both great - good choices.
Wednesday - Harwood Arms also great, was there on Sunday, one of my favourite spots.
Sunday afternoon tea - the big hitters like Claridges/The Ritz will be booked up a long time ago. They are surprisingly filling so I would personally give it a miss and save your appetite for Hedone in the evening.
Nice one keeping this series up!
For me, 'T22' ramen at bone daddies in soho - actually all their varieties - I've been back four times in the past two weeks! Average noodles but incredibly tasty broths - both chicken and the pork for the tonkotsu. Highlight has to be the eggs- amazing orange molten yolk and punchily seoasoned exterior. Best ramen I've has outside of Japan (and including some varieties there)
1. Ritas Dining - (Dalston, London) - chicken roll - I know very hyped up but honestly was blown away by this (a drink or two beforehand may have helped) - amazingly crispy exterior / juicy chicken / mayo with perhaps a hint of fennel - very very tasty
2. Bincho Yakitori - (Soho, London) - Ox tongue Kushiyaki - great depth of beefy flavour, very juicy, good soft texture with some bite.
Hey - is there any reason you are limiting yourself to the Victoria line? The tube system is fantastic and easy to use so I really wouldn't stick to just the one line!
There are obviously hundreds of threads on restaurants across London so i'd have a browse of some of them bearing in mind that you have the whole of the city at your disposal. If you do want to stick near the Victoria line then I'd check out threads on Soho (near Oxford Circus) which has plenty of restaurants which would meet your casual brief - off the top of my head some of my favourites are:
Bocca di Lupo / Barafina / Copita / Koya / Bincho Yakitori / Pitt Cue Co / Tonkotsu / Duck Soup / 10 Greek Street
In terms of local restaurants in Vauxhall, Brunswick House Cafe is very good and would be perfect for a low key dinner when you want to stay close to your hotel.
The Mall Tavern in Notting Hill smoke their own Salmon which is very good and a lot cheaper than wiltons! (I think around £9)
Hix smoke their own too which I think you can get in any of his restaurants which is pretty good (which you can also buy in Selfridges)
I'd say you have an excellent short list there- I have been to all of those apart from texture and would rate all highly. It really depends what kind of place you want, you mention it's business but not formal. Brawn is probably my favourite on your list but it is definitely on the casual side (there wouldn't be many suits) and its also a little out the way (with a ten minute or so walk through some of londons less salubrious areas likely). Bocca is another favourite of mine and could be a good option as its a nice balance between buzzy and formal - always some interesting stuff on the menu. St John is obviously legendary but whether it is suitable would depend on whether you group would enjoy a very stark environment and quite uncompromising food. Zucca is also great - you cant really go wrong with any of those that you list so I would just go for whatever fits your location and budget! Hope you enjoy wherever you go.
Big recommendation for Barrafina in Soho (probably my favourite mid range restaurant in town), also Bocca di Lupo (bar places kept free for walk ins) and Duck Soup
Pizarro is also good though i'd recommend Soho over Bermondsey if you are venturing out without a reservation. Soho has endless great options if your first choice is busy. Having said that, on a Sunday evening queues are probably not a major concern..
Agreed with Zuriga - I think Marylebone is pretty much a top choice where you are after the pretty lights/architecture of central london combined with easy access to great food options (around there/charlotte street/soho etc).
Going further west to Chelsea/Kensington/Notting Hill you will retain the picture-book London feel but its not quite so good for eating options within walking distance and you are getting a little far (in walking terms) from the central london food hotspots around Soho etc.
East London is fantastic and is the place to be for interesting new food spots/buzzy markets/diverse cultures but it definitely lacks the fairytale aesthetics of central/west London so may not be what you are after for your Christmas trip.
If I were you I would find another spot in Marylebone (I am sure there are plenty of alternatives!) - there have been dozens of openings in the past year within walking distance so I am sure there is enough new stuff to keep you entertained. You can then head pretty much anywhere around london - East/West to check out some of the markets/scenic areas etc
You have made a good start with those ones!
For Bistrotheque I would recommend it for brunch one day rather than lunch/dinner - also make sure you know where you are going as it is tough to find (absolutely no sign outside).
Good suggestions for Broadway Market and Burnt Enz. I would also recommend a pop up at Broadway Market (actually just around the corner) where a young chef called Ben Spalding (who used to be at Roganic and is now part time at the ledbury) is doing 'Stripped-Back' four course lunches with raw/cured ingredients to 6/8 customers around a tiny kitchen in the open air. It's very light and will take maybe 30mins to eat but is great to incorporate into your market visit and showcases a lot of current cooking trends/ingredients i.e. Noma style foraging/leaves etc (if that appeals).
Seconded that Y&A pizza is much better and their full menu is also pretty good (though definitely ask to sit upstairs - the room downstairs is heavy and oppressive).
Also in Camden is Market which is on the way to the Park from the station and serves very good simple St John inspired British dishes.
Slightly off the track but very doable is the Engineer in Primrose Hill which is a little overpriced for food but has an amazing beer garden at the back which is lovely on a summers evening
Good shout on Bocca di Lupo though please note there is absolutely no way it is more expensive than Locanda Locatelli. A meal at BdL normally sets me back £35-45 with modest wine. Locatelli would be twice that easily.
Also a good shout on Lina
Great list there from Manintransit.
St John is obviously very important to you but I would perhaps stick with just the one sitting untilk you have been there? It is obviously a very influential place and I have had some great meals there but I have also had some pretty disapointing ones.
If I were you I would book in for one dinner - if you love it then you can either go to the St John Restaurant bar area (where you can order smaller starter sized dishes to have alongside a good selection of ales) or get a last minute reservation at St John Bread and Wine. If you don't love it as much as expected then you have a free slot for somewhere else
If you have limited time in the city I just wouldn't immediately use up two slots on the same place.
Other great places influenced by St John include all the gastropubs listed by manintransit (Harwood Arms is my personal favourite) plus:
- Great Queen Street (very near your hotel)
Other options are almost infinite so would be helpful to get a little more guidance on what you like specifically.
One omission from Manintransit's list is The Ledbury which is probably the best regarded fine dining restaurant in London - make sure to book well ahead (2 months I think) to get a table.
I would also make sure not to shy away from the tube which has excellent coverage - some of the distances across London are huge and very expensive by taxi but pretty painless by the tube.
No problem - will hopefully be back before long!
Lunch - Momofuku Ssam -
Snack - At this point I realised we had still not had any NYC pizza! This had to be rectified so I picked up a Regina Margherita from Keste down the road. Due to the meals either side this was predominantly eaten for breakfast. Obviously not how it is ideally meant to be eaten but I have to say it aged very nicely with the cherry tomatoes/mozarella/basil seeming to be good quality and the base/crust nicely charred and smokey.
Final drinks at Fedora - recommended by the server at L'artusi. A nice little understated bar/restaurant with great music/good crowd/reasonable drinks - the perfect end to the trip.
We are now back in very very rainy London and missing NYC greatly - I am currently trying to persuade the other half to move over with me for a year (am half American so need to take advantage of the dual citizenship!). I am still checking the chowhound manhattan board and tragically pining after the food - after spending so long planning the trip and the various food options I definitely have the post-eating-holiday blues!
Thanks again for everyones help - if anyone is coming over to London then be sure to post queries on the board or message me directly - on some fronts I think we have a good few options to match those of your city!
Lunch - Il Pesce at Eataly. This was a weekday so Eataly wasn't too busy - I know it provokes mixed reactions but I have to say I absolutely loved it and would love to have this as a local shop. I have been to the one in Bologna but this was just on a different scale altogether. The lunch at Il Pesce wasn't quite so good though. We shared the smoked fish of the day (Bluefish) which was tasty but not mind blowing. For main we had the mussels (average) and the Squid with chili and lemon - this was good but seemed a little overpriced at €24. We saw a couple problems with service - a lady next to us had to send back a salad which had been destroyed with vinegar - the situation was not handled especially well by the staff.
Dinner - EMP. So, mixed emotions on this one. First of all, the food was fantastic- bite for bite some of the best food I have had ever.
Amuse bouches - the standard selection - stand outs were quails egg on toasted brioche with bacon, the yogurht lolly with curry lentils and the apple 'tea'
So - a great procession of food but at the end I was left feeling very slightly disappointed. Why? I think it comes down to the service. I had read so much about the incredible service balancing formality and warmth and so had dangerously high expectations. What I felt though was that some of the servers though, very attentive and professional, felt slightly robotic. This came out especially in the pitch the servers give when serving the food - notably the duck where a little more spiel is given. I understand the servers will have gone through these motions dozens of times every day but unfortunately it did come across like this. There were flashes of more genuine warmth here and there but overall I felt that the service lacked a certain genuineness to it. (for anyone heading to London I recommend Roganic for fine dining with genuinely warm and personal service as a contrast). In addition, there were one or two blips in the service. Firstly, on ordering cocktails at the start of the meal we asked for some guidance and were given absolutely none other than 'they are all good' - I went for a bourbon based one which whilst tasty was heavy, strong and entirely unsuitable as an aperatif. I should have realised this before ordering perhaps but I would have appreciated some guidance from the sommelier since it was requested. Secondly, when asking for advice on the menu choices our server just repeated over and over that we should 'follow our instincts'...ok, i appreciate that but I am still asking for some guidance and you aren't helping me at all with that... Anyway - small niggles but it wasn't quite what I expected - at a restaurant I like to have a rapport with the staff and have some kind of dialogue going to enhance our experience and to improve my choices, This was not something I felt happened at EMP.
Anyway - I hate to put a downer on that as it really was fantastic food. The overall experience just didn't quite have the x factor for me that can make fine dining so enjoyable.