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London Set Lunches


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Oh dear you've all unearthed names I've been meaning to visit for months, if not years (Sketch never had space in the Lecture Room whenever I popped by). L'Ambassade especially. It will be a tough choice partially influenced by who has space and the shorter tube route possibly.

And Foliage... oh so tempting. So is Sushi Hiro actually, haven't had decent sushi in months.

The Square I think I'll keep for a proper eating session (tasting menu?) since it is so highly rated on these boards.

Please keep them coming

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Oh dear you've all unearthed names I've been meaning to visit for months, if not years (Sketch never had space in the Lecture Room whenever I popped by). L'Ambassade especially. It will be a tough choice partially influenced by who has space and the shorter tube route possibly.

And Foliage... oh so tempting. So is Sushi Hiro actually, haven't had decent sushi in months.

The Square I think I'll keep for a proper eating session (tasting menu?) since it is so highly rated on these boards.

Please keep them coming

Two of the best meals I had last year were Foliage and Hibiscus closely followed by the Ledbury.

Given the choice now,to return to one,or another visit to Ambassade I would certainly choose the latter.

Part of that decision has to do with the design qualities of the restaurant,something others may not be so interested in.The food was about on par.

As another point of interest,"if you are into cars" perhaps fifty meters away is H R Owens Ferrari showroom.If it is still there you can look at Man City's owner,s brand new stunning white ,red leather, "red rocker covers" convertible.

For close on £200k I don't think he will get much use in the not so sun drenched City of Manchester!

Bet the red half of the city .would like to do their own rain dance on it,lol

"So many places, so little time"

http://londoncalling...blogspot.co.uk/

@d_goodfellow1

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Marcus Wareing at the Berkley - highly recommended - absolutely delicious!

Indeed but the lunch is too expensive - for that much we can get wine and coffee at some other places (Foliage, Aubergine...). Perhaps next year when I am a bit richer (if I'm still here).

Ledbury... will have a look. I considered it before - thanks for reminding me the name.

I really didn't like Hibiscus' style when I went. Looking at the menu it doesn't seem to have changed much (the style, not the menu).

Down to: Ambassade, Foliage (depends if my friend wants to go again, and the fact it's in a hotel is a bit unpleasant, but it's perfect for the occasion), Ledbury, Sketch. Aubergine possibly.

L'Autre Pied menu isn't as tempting. It's similar to what I can get for half that price in Alimentum. A good meal, but not as special as e.g. what I can expect from Sketch...

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Marcus Wareing at the Berkley - highly recommended - absolutely delicious!

Indeed but the lunch is too expensive - for that much we can get wine and coffee at some other places (Foliage, Aubergine...). Perhaps next year when I am a bit richer (if I'm still here).

Ledbury... will have a look. I considered it before - thanks for reminding me the name.

I really didn't like Hibiscus' style when I went. Looking at the menu it doesn't seem to have changed much (the style, not the menu).

Down to: Ambassade, Foliage (depends if my friend wants to go again, and the fact it's in a hotel is a bit unpleasant, but it's perfect for the occasion), Ledbury, Sketch. Aubergine possibly.

L'Autre Pied menu isn't as tempting. It's similar to what I can get for half that price in Alimentum. A good meal, but not as special as e.g. what I can expect from Sketch...

http://www.the-berkeley.co.uk/uploadedFile..._lunch_menu.pdf

£35 for 3 coursesis pretty damn good for 2 michelin stars though..

"Experience is something you gain just after you needed it" ....A Wise man

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Absolutely agree! And it's Wareing, (perhaps) the next London 3*. I'll see if we can stretch budget.

edit - however, looking at the menu: I find chicken to be an incredibly boring meat (those local chicken from the butchers' back when they were in FF where I grew up excepted, but I've not tasted that taste ever since not even at L'Atelier de JR), sea trout similarly, and I've had enough pork belly this year to build a whole pork. Whilst starter and dessert look good, that + the fact I can get wine and coffee as well somewhere like Aubergine will I'm afraid kill the deal. If he's cooking French he should include more interesting stuff!

edit 2 - Hawksmoor? £20 steak & superchips, £5-8 dessert, £8 cocktail?

Edited by Roger le goéland (log)
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Booked at L'Ambassade. Review with photos to come on the relevant thread.

Thanks for your advice everyone, I'm sure this thread will be useful to many.

Roger your a star. Really,really,hope,that you have a wonderful time especially as I have put my head on the chopping block!!!

I'm,of course sure you will.

Fingers crossed that Jean-Christophe has not gone on a flying visit back to the mother ship in Lyon although the quality of the food will be the same.Assured!

If you do meet him his enormous enthusiasm will add to the experience.

As a footnote,check out the other white restored Ferrari valued at £3 million plus.

Enjoy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

"So many places, so little time"

http://londoncalling...blogspot.co.uk/

@d_goodfellow1

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Absolutely agree! And it's Wareing, (perhaps) the next London 3*. I'll see if we can stretch budget.

I am still struggling to see Marcus Wareing getting three stars.

I know he is a fine chef and has stated publically he is shooting for the highest honours, but the his food simply is not distinctive.

Eat blind at any three star and you would be able to identify the restaurant from the dishes on the plate. I simply don't see that with MW@B.

J

More Cookbooks than Sense - my new Cookbook blog!
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I have to say that I had one of my worse meals ever last year, at L'ambassade. I found the restaurant totally overpriced and underwhelming, especially the wine list, which was a complete piss take. The service was all over the place and the food took for ever to arrive. I remember having a rump of veal that had to changed as it was so badly overcooked, which I recall was around thirty nine pounds for the dish. This was incomparison to a great piece of veal at Lindsay House the day before and at half the price.

I thought at the time the place was trying to punch way above its weight. Obviously from the recent comments, sounds like they may of got a grip of the place. Still not sure if I will be rushing back, too many better places to go in London.

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Absolutely agree! And it's Wareing, (perhaps) the next London 3*. I'll see if we can stretch budget.

I am still struggling to see Marcus Wareing getting three stars.

I know he is a fine chef and has stated publically he is shooting for the highest honours, but the his food simply is not distinctive.

Eat blind at any three star and you would be able to identify the restaurant from the dishes on the plate. I simply don't see that with MW@B.

J

agreed, he doesn't have his own style. it's just euro-bland michelin. keeps taking techniques and combos from more cutting edge places and melding them into his haute french and it doesn't really gel.

you don't win friends with salad

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So not worth visiting?

From my experience, people generally either love it or hate it.

I am a fan myself. I have had three meals here and there is always something that impresses me.

In terms of food, I don't think there is another restaurant in London that offers what Ambassade does.

I would not call it perfect though - service may need a little polish and it is expensive.

Food Snob

foodsnob@hotmail.co.uk

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I meant Wareing. I was thinking "maybe I should go before he gets star 3 and then it becomes far too expensive and impossible to book". But I am a lot less tempted now.

I think l'Ambassade is worth visiting just based on the amount of polarisation present on this board and between critics (AA Gill's review was particularly amusing). Maybe it will be another Hibiscus for me. We'll see.

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I meant Wareing. I was thinking "maybe I should go before he gets star 3 and then it becomes far too expensive and impossible to book". But I am a lot less tempted now.

I think l'Ambassade is worth visiting just based on the amount of polarisation present on this board and between critics (AA Gill's review was particularly amusing). Maybe it will be another Hibiscus for me. We'll see.

Sorry, my mistake.

With regards to Wareing, I agree with what has been said above.

After my meal (admittedly way back in October) I was unimpressed - one standout dish, but the rest were pretty...lifeless

Food Snob

foodsnob@hotmail.co.uk

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I meant Wareing. I was thinking "maybe I should go before he gets star 3 and then it becomes far too expensive and impossible to book". But I am a lot less tempted now.

yes, that was part of my logic, and unfortunately it cost us £235 a head to discover we were wrong :laugh:

i'd say there were certainly other places i'd try ahead of MW at the moment.

you don't win friends with salad

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I meant Wareing. I was thinking "maybe I should go before he gets star 3 and then it becomes far too expensive and impossible to book". But I am a lot less tempted now.

I think l'Ambassade is worth visiting just based on the amount of polarisation present on this board and between critics (AA Gill's review was particularly amusing). Maybe it will be another Hibiscus for me. We'll see.

Sorry, my mistake.

With regards to Wareing, I agree with what has been said above.

After my meal (admittedly way back in October) I was unimpressed - one standout dish, but the rest were pretty...lifeless

Food Snob, I take it you have seen this Timeout

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Just to add to the polarisation...

Of the two (Petrus and Ambassade), it's Ambassade I'm heading back to, soon as the wallet recovers.

Arguably, Petrus suffered because of my expectation that it might be the next Great White Hope for 3 stars. On the other hand, Wareing himself helped fuel that expectation so only fair he is measured by it. And it seemed to come through in the cooking. Trying too hard, perhaps. Everything had just that one more flavour; one more technique; one more depth of richness. It felt heavy and overwrought. (little chops on the suckling pig were sublime, though..)

Ambassade was by contrast elegant on the plate and classical (at least until the desserts when it all went avant garde - but in a good way!). I found the service approachable, engaging and knowledgeable about what they were serving. The only fault was making a bit of a meal of the table service in preparing the mis-cuit duck for the canard a la presse. However, my God what a dish! The contrast between the almost chocolatey, bloody, ducky richness of the sauce and the piquancy of the translucent sweet and sour turnip being one of the most memorable moments of my eating year. Shame the decor is like someone pimped a Copenhagen disco c.1980. An elegant and refined meal.

Gareth

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Just to add to the polarisation...

Of the two (Petrus and Ambassade), it's Ambassade I'm heading back to, soon as the wallet recovers.

Arguably, Petrus suffered because of my expectation that it might be the next Great White Hope for 3 stars. On the other hand, Wareing himself helped fuel that expectation so only fair he is measured by it. And it seemed to come through in the cooking. Trying too hard, perhaps. Everything had just that one more flavour; one more technique; one more depth of richness. It felt heavy and overwrought. (little chops on the suckling pig were sublime, though..)

Ambassade was by contrast elegant on the plate and classical (at least until the desserts when it all went avant garde - but in a good way!). I found the service approachable, engaging and knowledgeable about what they were serving. The only fault was making a bit of a meal of the table service in preparing the mis-cuit duck for the canard a la presse. However, my God what a dish! The contrast between the almost chocolatey, bloody, ducky richness of the sauce and the piquancy of the translucent sweet and sour turnip being one of the most memorable moments of my eating year. Shame the decor is like someone pimped a Copenhagen disco c.1980. An elegant and refined meal.

Gareth

Glad to hear you enjoyed the meal.

I thought the theatre of the duck preparation added to the enjoyment,admittedly they do try to make it a bit of a spectacle of it.

However the board that they were using (master and apprentice) was not spiked so the said bird was moving all over the place.

We did not have the duck,the very knowlegeable and well traveled foodies on the next table did.

We had the same dish at La Tour de Argent some years ago,and thoroughly enjoyed it.

They sent us a postcard with the number of the duck!

Not sure how many that they have served but Frommers claim in excess of 1.2 million.

Be interesting to see if you get a postcard from Ambassade!

"So many places, so little time"

http://londoncalling...blogspot.co.uk/

@d_goodfellow1

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Yes, the fact that the press wasn't bolted down did move the whole thing away from "theatre" and towards Laurel and Hardy but I enjoyed it anyway.

Seperately, I'm aware of the one-stop poultry holocaust that is Tour D'Argent but I don't think I want to know the number of my unlucky duck ("Let him who hath understanding count the number of the Beast...") and I've always shied away from the idea of getting a postcard from something I've just eaten "Wish you were here. Wish it were you..."

The waitress at Ambassade said that the ducks they used were smothered, rather than having their throats cut in order to keep in all the blood for this particular dish. Don't know if this is true but it summons up a wonderful image of some small farm in France that's daily re-enacting a thousand little scenes from Othello with ducks as Desdemona.

G.

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Disappointing. I'm posting this review here rather than on the Ambassade thread because I feel that the "business lunch" and the tasting menu/ALC are very, very different animals.

We were expecting less than full-blown amazingness of French skills. But apart from a rather awesome chestnut veloute, the food was the kind you could get in a good bistro. At those prices I guess it makes sense. But this is definitely not the place to be going for a "great value set lunch" - Aubergine is much better in that respect; should have tried Sketch! I did enjoy the wine but would have appreciated not having 1/2kg of sediment in my glass (he just poured the bottom of the bottle). We had much, much better dinners and lunches at Alimentum and that's just £15/£17.50 (and with the extra cash you can buy fantastic wines and cocktails). Alimentum is now the stick against which I judge restaurants' set menus.

A table near us was having the TM - this looked fantastic, and so I will return, but not for the set lunch.

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