London has overtaken Mumbai as a second home ! Eating in London has been a overall good experience.
Chiquito at Leicester Square has been a great experience. The Mexican Food is awesome and service is very effective. Being a vegeterian, I love the options I get here. Also being in the heart of London, we can always catch up a great dinner with the desserts at Ben And Jerry’s. Of course, there are many other options in all cuisines at Leicester Square.
Italian Bistro at Paddington takes the prize for quick effective service, good food and decent prices.
After a few days in London, nothing beats the taste of Indian food. It makes you feel home. My best experience have been with South Indian food chains and Masala Zone. Masala Zone is an up-market Indian restaurant but they serve good food and have a great Indian ambience. They had 6-7 restaurants in London and each one has a different ambience and look and feel. One has Rajasthani puppets while another one has Bollywood theme etc. My last visit was at the Bayswater Road restaurant, where we were 15 minutes ahead of opening time but we were allowed in and asked to be seated while they get started. Good. The lady was courteous and she explained the stuff to our non-Indian guest. Impressive. Saraswati Bhavan, Chennai Dosa and Sarvanna Bhavan are the amazing South Indian food joints in Wembley. I just love them. Sagar in Hammersmith and Oxford Street are also wonderful.
The Dishoom restaurant is another classy Indian restaurant with a great spirit and culture. It revisits the Bombay Cafe experience !
Apart from these, I find the usual global chains to be quite handy when eating out. Costa, Starbucks and Nero are my staple coffee joints. Among restaurants, Pizza Hut (Marble Arch, Piccadilly), Subway, Zizzi are good ones.
Of course, I have had interesting experiences in London as well. We had one meeting in the Brick Lane. The Brick Lane is a Bangladeshi area with full of Balti and Curry Restaurants. It was interesting to experience a totally non-British area. It was a fully desi area. There was a petty-coat street which was like Mumbai’s Fashion Street or Linking Road Street Market or Relief Road Market of Ahmedabad. It was a flea market with dirt cheap rates. It was 11:50 am and we decided to have an early lunch as the next meeting was at 1 pm. We entered a Japanese restaurant near Liverpool Street Station. The lady stopped us. She said – The restaurant is not open yet. I asked – what time it will open? She said 12 noon. I asked – can we wait? it is only 10 minutes? She said – No. Please hang out ! I was wondering where was customer service? Where was any attention? No wonder there is recession !
I had a similar experience at a Chinese restaurant in Paddington. We had Aubergine on an earlier occasion. We wanted to try something different. Boss saw Beancurd in Hot Garlic Sauce curry. He asked whether he can have Vegetables in that. The lady said No. She was adamant. We asked why ? She said it will not taste good. We thought it was our decision. Then we saw Mix Vegetables in Hot Garlic Sauce in the Menu. We asked can we have that and can you include Beancurd in that. She said yes – we were just smiling !
Check The Art @ Masala Zone: