Category Archive: Fine dining

White linen, silver service, but not in Mr Michelin's book

Review: Scully, St James

When you go all-out for flavour and innovation, you won’t hit perfection every single time. Some dishes will be a bit OTT or just plain weird. For me, that’s part of the joy. I’d rather have food I can talk about and maybe a couple of dishes I can absolutely rave about, than several courses …

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Review: The Old Stamp House, Ambleside

I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about dining experiences, and how must expectation feeds into your enjoyment of a meal. I’ll be honest: I went to Core with so much buzz and hype about Clare Smyth’s restaurant having passed before my eyes that I was perhaps doomed to go “meh?” when I was treated …

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Review: Core, Notting Hill

Core is proper fine dining. The elegant room filled with soft lighting on white linen, the miracle thin glassware, the shimmying clusters of waiters bearing the next remove, it’s all there. This is not “casual fine dining” or “modern fine dining”. And that’s lovely. This is exactly the place to come if you want to …

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Review: Mere, London

We’re not sure how to pronounce Monica Galetti’s restaurant, Mere. It’s certainly not “meer” as in a watery marsh. It seems more likely to be “mair” if it’s French for mother. But the website confirms that it should be “mary” which is a Samoan pronounciation. The restaurant also aims to be French with South Pacific …

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Review: Opheem, Birmingham

I wonder to what extent labelling a dish “Winning dish on Great British Menu” skews the punters to order it? I’m willing to bet that a lot more of them fly out of the kitchen than the other mains or starters they’re sharing the menu with. And chef Aktar Islaam has two “winner on GBM” …

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