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I have been away and came back last week.

I read the Giles Coren review of Lolas last Saturday in the Times, and thought it sounded fabulous. He is normally quite critical of at least something when he reviews a restaurant, but he seemed to be saying that in his opinion this new Chef was as good as, if not better than Tom Aikin...

I have always liked Lola's, but this new Chef seems to be doing some wonderful things.

Has anyone been recently? I have some clients who would like to dine in North London and I think Lola's would be a very interesting place to take them (Still seems a good wine lovers place??....)

Review is here..

Lola's

(Has this web page been posted correctly?)

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  • 4 weeks later...

I had lunch there about a month ago and posted on the other LOLA's thread.

It was very good and I think I called it a "welcome return to form"

My last meal there before that was not so good and the place felt profoundly moribund. I think this was when Reid had left and things were a bit confused

Not a bad choice for lunch, I would say

S

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  • 1 month later...

On Monday night I had a fabulous meal at Lola’s. I had planned to go before but the reviews turned sour with the revolving door of chefs. But comments about the new one inspired me to take the plunge and I ate one of the best meals I have had for a while.

The room was half full, but it was Monday night. The pre-starter was a very flavoursome lentil soup. Tortellini with asparagus and broad beans followed with a main of lamb 2 ways (rare best end and a wonderful rosemary-infused slow cooked shoulder) with stuffed pepper and a small portion of dauphinoise potatoes. The pre-desert was blackcurrant with a liquorice mousse. Desert was a fantastic pear tart topped with raspberry soufflé with a side ball of pear sorbet. Yum.

Service was pleasant and efficient. They also won marks for not including service on the bill. It drives me mad when they add it to the bill automatically and then leave the credit card slip open.

This has got to be the best some of the food, and best value, in Islington. With starters at £7, mains at £17 and pudding at £7 it is not cheap, but it is in a similar price bracket to the Draper’s Arms (which I I really enjoy) and a number of other restaurants but this is in a different league. The wine list is wide ranging and caters to the low end as well as the high. I hope this chef doesn’t leave!

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  • 3 months later...

Lolas are hoping to cash in on the annual health kick by offering a couple of de-toxifiying cocktails in January. The first is Lolas Orange Blossom, this is a combination of rosehip, hibiscus, orange and white grape juice as well as a dash of Aloe Vera and orange blossom. Alternatively, you can indulge in a Refrigerating Cleanser, a combination of carrot, celery, fennel, tomato, cucumber, shallot

and lemon juice with a touch of aloe vera.

Info courtesy of Sauce Communications

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  • 3 months later...

Been lurking for long enough now, time to get posting. Thought I'd start by dragging this thread to the top. I've eaten in Lola's a couple of times recently and been impressed on both occasions. I never tried it under Hywel Jones, but there's some good stuff there now, including the fixed price lunches. The maitre d' is a top man, as are most of the front of house. Standout dishes for me were the ravioli of teal and a quince lasagne. Winelist includes a very reasonably priced Viognier, Flagstone South African red and several good stickies, although the special mention must go to the flight of sherries. Seven different glasses for 9.75: the best bargain in London? Tell me there are other sherry fans out there...

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Thanks. I don't even live in the UK at the moment, but always stay with friends in Islington (Newington Green actually) when I'm in town. She-friend works over the road from Moro, so we had dinner there last time I was over in March. Great atmosphere and decent sherries, although I had just come from Jerez...

Edited by Dan Ryan (log)
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Did you get to the Quality Chop House around the corner from Moros? Extortionately expensive, but loads of fun.

And Welcome to eGullet!

"Gimme a pig's foot, and a bottle of beer..." Bessie Smith

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"111,111,111 x 111,111,111 = 12,345,678,987,654,321" Bruce Frigard 'Winesonoma' - RIP

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St John will beckon me the next time. Is it still going strong?

yes - went last week & had a very enjoyable evening

nothing new to report except the foie gras portions seem to get smaller each time I visit :sad:

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St John will beckon me the next time. Is it still going strong?

yes - went last week & had a very enjoyable evening

nothing new to report except the foie gras portions seem to get smaller each time I visit :sad:

St John is getting curiouser and curiouser.

1) perhaps they've been doing this for awhile, and I never noticed, but they are now promoting the fact that they are an off-license

2) as you've noted, their portions are getting smaller; their plates, 'starker' if that is even possible - slap down that slab of meat or whole fish - and serve it.

3) their bread loaves, by contrast, are getting larger

4) Haven't seen brownies or eccles cakes in a long while...next time I'm there, I'll ask

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4) Haven't seen brownies or eccles cakes in a long while...next time I'm there, I'll ask

Ate there 2 weeks ago and both brownies and eccles cakes were on the menu....embarrassed to admit it, but I often look at the menu online, and Eccles Cakes at least seem to be on there regularly.

My meal was excellent (despite my squeamish dining partner) and my serving of Veal Heart was pretty darn large :wink:

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The brownies seem to have migrated to the bread and wine site down the road. The website is great fun though - they update the menus twice daily so you can see exactly what will be on offer (though they tend to supplement it with specials). If you have the marrowbone starter portion sizes will be the least of your worries.

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  • 1 year later...
  • 1 month later...

According to an interview in the latest Restaurant magazine, Preston was only bought in to consult for a 6 month period, but nevertheless Lola's does seem to get through head chefs at a higher than usual rate.

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According to an interview in the latest Restaurant magazine, Preston was only bought in to consult for a 6 month period, but nevertheless Lola's does seem to get through head chefs at a higher than usual rate.

Sorry! I need to put in my tuppence ha'penny. Juliet Peston was with us for three years; Gary Lee for two years, then I had my go at going down the Michelin road which was frankly disasterous both financially and in terms of the reputation of the restaurant, since it got labelled with the 'in and out chefs' syndrome (Hywel Jones and Robert Reid both giving the restaurant a mere 8 months between them) when our regulars flocked away from the restaurant because they (rightly) couldnt stand the hour and a half delays between courses, and half the time with one of these chefs I had to bang down the door of his flat in order to wake him up to get him into work anyway.

Elisha Carter was with Lolas for eighteen months, followed by Brian Sparks, formerly his sous chef. Juliet Peston was brought back whilst Brian was still here in the casual role of consultant and generally overseeing the kitchen, in order to bring it back to its formerly successful role of being a neighbourhood restaurant with jolly decent food and wines(and incidentally this is still Juliet's role)

I know e gullet isnt a forum for gripes and Lola's may be a 'prime location' but it is also bloody hard to persuade people to come up the stairs onto a first floor restaurant with no footfall in an extremely competitive area, and also it is bloody hard just to run a restaurant frankly.

I know I have made tons of mistakes and should never have thought Hywel et al would move from Michelin starred hotel restaurants to a humble local restaurant like Lola's and bring it too up to Michelin status, but I really dont want to be criticised for my aspirations, even if they did get flung back into my face.

Sorry if I sound indignant Andy.

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