New Street Grill – More great food from D&D London

Set in an historic 18th Century warehouse near Liverpool Street, originally used by the East India Company, New Street Grill is a stylish contemporary restaurant, part of the D&D London restaurant group which is renowned for quality of food and service. As my dining companion and better half said, I can’t think of a D&D restaurant that I don’t like. Service was indeed excellent from moment one. We were greeted at the door by Sean Gavin and Alexis Meszoly, the very personable Senior General Manager and Manager. They offered us both a delicious glass of champagne and gave us a … [Read more...]

Aviary – Great New Venue with Birds Eye View of the City

Our review dinner at Aviary (opened in December), the new bar/restaurant atop the almost equally new Montcalm Royal London House hotel (opened in October) in Finsbury Square, and thus only a short walk from the Barbican, did not start well – indeed might have been something of a disaster.  I am currently rather unsteady on my feet courtesy of a stroke from which I am not yet fully recovered and when we arrived were directed to a lift which took us to the 9th floor where the restaurant reception desk is located and where one can leave coats etc.  So far so good but then was faced with a short … [Read more...]

Bridge Perfect

Jennie Blouet and Franco Barone travelled a little further to the South Bank of the Thames near Tower Bridge to another of D&D’s top restaurants – the Pont de la Tour - for a  top rated dining experience and commented as follows: You know when you hope that something will be perfect, but you expect that it probably won’t be?  And how, being human, there is comfort in finding out that you were right? This was the fourth time that I’d been to the Pont in (sigh) 20 years.  I had fond memories of lovely food in grand surroundings, excellent, formal service and views of surely one of the … [Read more...]

London Steakhouse Co. City

London Steakhouse Co is discretely tucked away around the corner from Dirty Dicks pub on Bishopsgate.  We tubed to Liverpool St. from the Barbican because I had a lazy partner in tow, but it’s not too long a walk through the Liverpool St station concourse and straight out the other end. I don’t see any mention of Marco Pierre White even though when it opened in 2008, the restaurant was the first and original Steakhouse to bear Marco’s name (followed a year later by another in Chelsea).  These two are the only restaurants worldwide in which White is a major shareholder. The interior … [Read more...]

Great Weekend Brunch at Coq d’Argent

Coq d’Argent is part of the D&D group of over 30 famous venues in London, Leeds and overseas.  A number of them, fortunately for us, are on our doorstep.  As I started to do my research on this restaurant and scrolled through the other restaurants in the group (Angler in South Place, Le Pont de la Tour at Shad Thames for instances) I realised that this might not be the casual brunch I had been expecting.  The D&D websites all have really full content, and as I checked out the menu, I gleefully put my diet on hold. Coq d’Argent is at No. 1 Poultry, which is at the Bank end of … [Read more...]

The Wright Brothers – Sumptuous Seafood in Spitalfields

Several years ago the writer ate several times at a great little Spanish Tapas Bar located in Old Spitalfields Market.  This closed a few years back and the space was taken over by seafood restaurant specialists, The Wright Brothers, who also have extremely well regarded establishments in Borough Market, Soho and South Kensington along with the Ferryboat Inn in Falmouth and operate their own oyster farm, also in Falmouth.  Thus I was very much looking forward to reviewing the Spitalfields outlet given that seafood, when fresh, well presented and cooked to perfection is probably my eating-out … [Read more...]

City Pub offers nice food in bright surroundings

The White Horse pub in Exchange Square, that offshoot of the Broadgate Centre located above the tracks at the north end of Liverpool Street station, has been described by some as a gastropub.  That might be stretching the definition a bit far, but it does provide decently upmarket pub food in a nice bright and cheerful space, with an outdoor area which comes into its own in good weather.  It is open throughout the day and evening providing breakfast for those on their way in to the surrounding offices from 7.30 am, through lunch and dinner with food service until10 pm.  People mostly tend to … [Read more...]

Coin Laundry in Exmouth Market

– not another launderette but a laid-back place to eat and drink Ultra-basic retro decor, quirky names and decent food and wine and speciality cocktails seems to be the recipe being built on by Urban Leisure Group in a slew of bar/restaurants springing up around the Capital.  Barbican Life readers may well already be familiar with ‘Ask for Janice’ on Long Lane, near Smithfield Market, which has become a popular venue, local to the Barbican, for drinks, coffee and food – often in conjunction with websurfing on laptop computers using the wifi. One of the latest creations of the Group … [Read more...]

Urban Coterie: Great views, decor, service and food

This is the second recently-featured restaurants in which Michelin-starred restaurateur, Anthony Demetre (of Wild Honey and Arbutus fame), and the Searcys group are involved.  The first of these was Osteria in the Barbican and now we have visited Urban Coterie which opened at the tail end of 2015 on the 17th floor of the brand new M by Montcalm hotel located close to Old Street Station, Moorfields Eye Hospital and Silicon Roundabout – around a 10-12 minute walk from the Barbican’s northern fringes. One has to say this new restaurant certainly has Wow factor with high ceilings, floor to … [Read more...]

Vivat Bacchus: South African steaks and wine

Vivat Bacchus in Farringdon, which describes itself as a South African Steak Restaurant and wine bar, has now been open for over 12 years and it clearly has the commercial touch of resilience.  Barbican Life had not been back for a while and my partner remembered the Cheese Room, so we paid another visit on a Thursday night. With a great address near-by (just a short walk down from Charterhouse Street, and it is over on the other side of Farringdon Street), the exterior is perhaps rather too understated and you might miss it unless there is a poster in the window.  Inside, however, the … [Read more...]