Tag Archives: review

Primo London Restaurant Review

Primo London Restaurant
Primo London Restaurant

In Italian Primo means ‘one’ or ‘first’ and I have to say after my visit last week, that the service at Primo is ‘first rate’. For those who haven’t heard about new Italian restaurant Primo now open on Shaftesbury Avenue, they are aiming to  resurrect our love of  ‘Pollo Sorpresa’, more commonly known as the Chicken Kiev. The day that we went, London was covered in snow which could explain why it was rather quiet.

We were welcomed by a friendly doorman which was a nice classic touch and shown a very nice table in the corner. As you can see, the interior of Primo is classic and sophisticated. My dining companion also noted that there was a good amount of space between tables which is good when you are trying to have an intimate date.

2013-01-18 19.34.48
Meal started off with some lovely olives and bread

To start with we were presented with some lovely olives, brushcetta and tomato dipping source. This also came with a basket of the most tastiest homemade bread with olives and fruit baked inside.

Selection of cured meats from their Cicchetti
Selection of cured meats from their Cicchetti

For starters we decided to opt to share a plate of cured meats, which in hindsight considering the size of our main was a good idea.

2013-01-18 20.13.32
Primo London’s fabulous Chicken Kiev

The Pièce de résistance the chicken kiev, arrived on a bed of spinach with chicken jus.  It looked amazing! It definitely made up for all the crappy chicken kievs I have had in the past. It tasted crispy and succulent, and the chicken was obviously of a high quality. To go with the chicken kiev we opted for sauteed potatoes, broccoli and bread which were nice, simple accompaniments.

Sauteed Potatoes, broccoli and bread
Sauteed Potatoes, broccoli and bread

Desert was tiramisu in a cup and the chocolate piece was a lovely touch. I eat a lot of tiramisu when I dine out and this was probably in my top 5 of one’s that I have eaten in London.

2013-01-18 20.58.42
Tiramisu served in a cup – best I’ve tasted without a doubt!
Apple tart & vanilla ice cream
Apple tart & vanilla ice cream
Painting by Ronnie Wood
Painting by Ronnie Wood

Once we had finished our meal, looking around I noticed that all the paintings in the restaurant were by none other than rolling stone Ronnie Wood, so if you do visit be sure to take a peek.

Overall I really enjoyed my visit to Primo London, the food is off a high standard and even though it is a bit on the posh side, I don’t think we ever felt uncomfortable. If you’re looking for simple well executed food then I highly rate this place. Price wise mains range from £16-24 which main seem a bit dear for some, but well worth it if you are looking for a treat.   I for one will be definitely be going back for more of their chicken kiev and tiramisu.



Time Out London Ipad App – Review


Being a bit of a geek and lover of all things London, I was pleased when contacted to check out The Time Out London iPad app. When compiling my list of things to do in London, Time Out is one of the many sources that I can always rely on to provide interesting and unique information. The Time Out London iPad app is no exception and makes finding something to do in London very easy due to its user-friendly interface, large images and easy navigation. It’s simple to use interface means that with a  few swipes through the app you will be shown a whole host of great places to visit.

What I really liked about the app is the fact that you can you can select venues by using What, When and Where and the content written by Time Out’s editors  is clear and concise making it easier to make you decision. Also if you are new to London or just fancy trying a new are out, you can’t go wrong with one of their area guides.

Newer features of the app are being able to book restaurant tables from recommendations and critics choice which is helpful if you fancy trying somewhere new but are nervous about what it will be like.  The only improvement I could see for this app would be to be able to view things offline, but with readily available wi-fi in most places this shouldn’t be too much of a problem.

It is now available from the iTunes app store here.

Olympic Themed Ladies Night At Apres-London

This is ladies night and I feel alright…oh this is ladies night… Oh what a night! Okay I’ll stop singing now before your computer screen shatters, to tell you about my experience at  Apres-London  a boutique bar and lounge behind Oxford Street. Last week Lanky Girl was invited to their Olympic themed ladies night where we were treated to complimentary canapes and cocktails. I just have one word for this place awesome! It was like a very grown-up slumber party (there was a small group of good-looking guys there too hehe).

The ladies night was held in the basement lounge, which was dark, intimate and plush. A great place to host a party or take your date. Throughout the night we were lucky enough to be serenaded by a singer belting out an array of indie classics. My friend and I had such a fun night and the best thing, didn’t spend a penny! Apparently these ladies nights will be regularly occurring at Apres-London so I recommend that you join the Apres London Facebook page for updates.

For more information on the Apres-London  please visit http://apres-london.com/

Welcome to the Candyshop! Après Lounge and Cocktail Bar launches Five Spring Candy Cocktails

Apres Lounge and Cocktail Bar

“I’ll take you to the candy shop, Let the drink hit the spot…Woah!” Not quite 50 cent but you get my drift. Last week Lanky girl and Co found themselves in a cute little bar and lounge called Après which is situated around the back of Oxford Street. With the arrival of spring fast approaching, the mixologists at Après Lounge and Cocktail Bar have decided there’s no better way to welcome in such a refreshing time of year, than with a taste bud makeover.  Stirring things up they have branded the month of March ‘CandyShop’ and created Five Spring Candy Cocktails to celebrate.

On show were a ununsual mix of cocktails: Pear Drop, Parma Violet, Rum & Raisin, Rhubarb & Custard and Lemon & Liquorice.

On the night we got to taste the Parma Violet and Rhubarb and Custard Cocktails. I have to say that I wasn’t sure I would like any of it but the Rhubarb & Custard tasted delish! I wasn’t brave enough to try the Lemon and liquorice. I would go easy if you’re a bit of a lightweight as these cocktails are strong! Each cocktail was served with an array of sweets perfect for those of us who have a sweet tooth. The bar itself is intimate and cozy a perfect place to take a date or to go for a catch up with friends. I think I will be going back!

The CandyShop at Après Lounge and Cocktail Bar runs from 6th March – 31st March 2012

 Après Lounge and Cocktail Bar is open Monday – Saturday from 5.30pm –Late, Daily.

 Après Lounge and Cocktail Bar is located at 31 Duke street, London W1U 1LG.


Bistro Du Vin Clerkenwell and Soho – Review


Firstly I have to as this post is slightly overdue. Bistro du vin or should I say Bistro “divine”  are two standalone restaurants that are part of the Hotel du Vin chain. Lanky Girl and Co were lucky enough to be invited to try both resaurants just before Christmas. Watch the video below to see what I got up to.

Bistro du Vin Clerkenwell

Situated very close to Smithfield market is Bistro du vin Clerkenwell. Each of the Bistros has a theme, and this one they place an emphasis on good old fashion meat, le francais style.
A unique selling point of the Bistro is its open kitchen. Here you can sit around watching the chefs prepare the dishes before you eat them. Its also a great chance for diners to interact with chefs and share tips. Business types  or private diners can choose to use the Whisky Snuggle meeting room,  a windowed wall of marbled slabs where they host whisky tastings or choose the meat cellar another private dinning room that seats up to 12 people. Here you can watch the meat being aged (for a minimum of 28 days). Also Bistro du Vin have “Meat to butcher” events where diners can watch the meat being cut and receive a bit of a background on where the different cuts of meat come from, before watching it being cooked in the open kitchen.

The atmosphere when we entered Bistro du Vin warm and intimate. Staff were very accommodating, quick to attend to us and we had a fantastic sommelier who was very good at recommending wines to suit each of our courses. I was lucky enough to get a seat right overlooking the kitchen and I had a nice discussion with the head chef. It was interesting to find out that their beef comes from Cumbria and the economics of buying produce locally.

Now for my verdict on the food. To start I had the twice baked Crottin de Chavignol cheese soufflé and my dining partner the Selsey crab with toasted sourdough. The cheese souffle melted like butter in my mouth and the flavour was intense and my friend said the crab was light in consistency and very tasty.

For mains we had Chateaubriand to share [Donald Russell] served with pommes frites, & green salad. Now, I have to admit that I’m one of these annoying people who usually insists that her meat is “well-done” however I’ve realised the errors of my ways. We had the beef medium and it tasted amazing, such flavour and the meat was succulent. Definitely comparable to the offerings of my other favourite steakhouse Hawksmoor.

For Dessert we enjoyed the crepe suzette. Delicious!

All in all we were really impressed on our visit Bistro Du vin Clerkenwell and would definitely recommend visiting them if you want Michelin star treatment without the stuffiness.


Bistro du Vin Soho

The next week we were invited to sample the culinary delights of their other restaurant, Bistro du Vin Soho. Being in the heart of media land this restaurant definitely has a cool vibe to it. Visitors can choose to recieve service in secluded little booths, sit at the bar or the open seating area. The unique selling point of Bistro du vin Soho has to be the variety of wines that are on offer. if you are a bit of  wine connoisseur you are going to be impressed as its one of the few restaurants where you can sample most wines by the glass. Private diners can choose to host their events in the wine cellar. I was pretty impressed by the chic cocktails that they had on offer and I got to sample their Dean Street Punch, very fruity!

Like the Clerkenwell branch staff were attentive and friendly and looking around everyone in the restaurant seemed to be enjoying themselves.

Now for my verdict on the food: For starters I had the soup of the day which was pea soup. I wasn’t overly impressed by the soup it did taste fresh but I think it could have had more flavour. For mains I had the beef Stroganoff  which I have to say was so lovely that I am definitely going back soon to have it. For dessert I floated up to heaven eating a Belgian waffle with ice cream.

Watch our interview with the group Sommelier below.

Overall I would recommend both restaurants. If you are looking for somewhere chic, good for a date or for dinner with your friends choose Soho. For something a bit more formal that will be sure to impress choose Bistro du Vin Clerkenwell.

For more information please visit http://www.bistroduvinandbar.com/

A date at Koffman’s At The Berkeley – Review


What better way to end my period of self-imposed hibernation then going to Koffman’s At The Berkeley for dinner. This was my first time going out to dinner on a Sunday night but I have to say that it is something I would do again. The restaurant wasn’t very busy and because of this we had very attentive service and it was easy to maintain a conversation. Koffman’s (after the legendary chef Pierre Koffmann) is an informal French bistro-style restaurant based at the Berkeley hotel. Here is what I ate:

Hand dived scallops, ink sauce & broccoli purée
Hand dived scallops, ink sauce & broccoli purée

Starter: The scallops were cooked to perfection, the brocoli was sweet and fluffy combined with the ink sauce I found myself  wanting more. A simple dish that I would definitely give 10/10.

Herb Encrusted Lamb
Herb-crusted rump of lamb

Main: Now I have a confession, I am one of those annoying people who likes their meat “well-done” and that is why I always worry when I’m eating French food. However on this occasion I was persuaded that the lamb shouldn’t be more than medium. I have to say that I am now a convert. The lamb was succulent and moist and combined with the cheesy mushrooms it blew my socks off.

Pistachio Souffle

Dessert: I chose the Pistachio Soufflé. The dish had a lovely strong nutty aroma, but I found it a bit heavy after eating all the rest of the food.

In between we had a lovely mini burger, a glass of champagne and some lovely French breads.

 This was all washed down with a lovely bottle of Chateau La Coste, Bellugue Rose.
Overall I would definitely recommend Koffman’s if you would like to taste good quality French cooking. Its intimate surroundings are great for a special occasion and it doesn’t have any of the pretentiousness sometimes associated with French restaurants.

A meal for two and wine came to around 160 pounds.


Koffman's Pig

The Collection – Review

Watch our interview with Head Chef Alex Fanzola of The Collection.

Lanky Girl has been eating out a lot lately and one of the few places to really blow me away is a new restaurant in South Kensington, The Collection. It’s interior has been designed under the direction of design genius Tom Dixon. The result is a cutting edge and modern interior with plush velvet chairs and  intimate lighting making it very inviting. Lanky Girl and Co headed down to The Collection on a Wednesday evening to sample the food and interview chef Alex Fanzola.

Upon entering the restaurant (I have to add that the walkway lighting display is magical) we were greeted by friendly staff who took our coats and showed us to our table. The layout of the restaurant is on two levels the top-level being the dining area (great for people watching on a busy night out) and the bottom being a spacious bar and lounge area.

The Collection has an extensive cocktail and wine list and we were given the chance to try two of their signature cocktails. The first being the Prince Charming cocktail which was vodka based, very fruity and zesty. The other being the Luciana Martinez  cocktail named after the model, made from slow gin, maraschino liqueur and aperol. Very strong, but delicious.

One of The Collection’s selling points is their homemade breads served with their cold pressed infused flavoured olive oils. I have to say I was blown away by the foccacio bread so moist and soft we couldn’t stop eating it and I would have finished the basket if our waiter hadn’t warned us about leaving room for the first course! We had three different olive oil dips, truffle, lemon, and basil. I have to say that my favourite was the truffle. With a focus on healthy eating all the dishes at The Collection are cooked with olive oil and no butter is used.  The Collection has a great sharing concept which means you can order 3 or 4 small plates to share with friends and family.

For starters we ordered:

Now I am always afraid of raw seafood but I was impressed by this dish, it tasted very light, fresh and zesty.

Spiced chicken, carrot puree and orange.

Chicken was soft and succulent, carrot puree had a kick to it and the orange was like finding a little sweet surprise in the sauce.

Baked prawn, basil and roast garlic.

Really lovely smoky taste to the prawn, I will order this on my next visit.

Seared veal cutlet, watercress and salsa verde.

One word. Yummy!

For main:

Hay roasted lamb shank, pistachio sauce and artichoke puree.

The lamb was cooked to perfection with lovely combination of flavours. Easily our  favourite dish of the night.

Barbecue grouper, samphire and spiced sweetcorn.

Grouper as a fish was new to me, it is quite meaty in texture. Additional flavour came from the samphire (which is like baby asparagus) and the tomato sauce.

For dessert:

Warm pistachio tartlet, white chocolate moose, and macerated cherries.

The caramelized top was sweet and crunchy, moose was fluffy and the cherries had sharp alcoholic taste. Only wasn’t so sure about the tart case would have preferred it without it.

Greek yoghurt panna cotta, preserved summer berries and lemon verbena.

A naughty treat!

Wines: Malbeck, red wine and Sauvignon Blanc Sancerre. 

Apart from the food, one reason that I would recommend trying The Collection is the staff. All the staff were obviously well-trained in the food and our friendly waiter gave us lots of good recommendations. It was obvious that the staff at this restaurant really care about the food and providing the best experience which made our experience very positive.

The Collection is a great place to try Mediterranean style cooking with a twist and should appeal to everyone from families to friends and those looking for healthy alternative for dinner. If you find yourself in South Kensington do go and check it out.

For more information visit http://www.the-collection.co.uk/

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

@Siam Restaurant Soho Review

Recently Lanky Girl and Co was invited to try out Soho’s recent addition to the Thai dining scene @Siam. This contemporary mid-market eatery aims to provide authentic Thai food that doesn’t break the bank. Now I have to say that @Siam has its charm, it isn’t very big but the warm reception by the staff generally made me feel relaxed and at home. Talking to the owner Tip it was clear that customer service was very important. Also (Sshh.. but if you want to have a more intimate dinner Tip can organise for you to have one of the rooms to yourself). So what about the food? Well the restaurant’s best dishes are their seafood dishes. On our visit for starters, we were served soft shell crab salad with light chilli jam and mixed veg and an old favourite of mine chicken satay. Not being a fan of crab it is hard for me to judge the salad however it did taste very fresh and I liked the addition of pomegranate as it sweetened the flavour of the dish. The chicken satay had a light citrus flavour, wasn’t over cooked and peanut sauce yum! I would say the soft shell crab salad would be very good for summer due to its refreshing nature.

For main we were served  massaman curry with lamb, jasmine rice, king prawn salad and deep-fried sea bass with peppers, onions and fish sauce. For me the wining dish was the sea bass, crispy on the outside soft on the inside and with and the accompanied  fish sauce amazing! sweet, with a chilli kick. I happily polished off my plate. The lamb in the  massaman was succulent however, I think the sauce needed more flavour for my taste. The king prawn was also another tasty dish grilled to perfection without losing its flavour.

For deserts we  had banana fritter and vanilla ice cream and stuffed coconut sticky rice with Thai tea ice cream. Both dishes tasted delicious and the ice cream was good for lining the stomach after the spicy starter and main. All this was washed down with a couple of glasses of floral Gavi di Gavi.

My verdict? @Siam is a good restaurant offering value for money. Having eaten some very good Thai in my time I have to say that if you want to taste authentic Thai without breaking the bank @Siam is the place to go.

Our 3 course meal with drinks was complimentary but a meal  would cost around the 50 pound mark without drinks.

Watch our interview with Tip owner of @Siam.

Pierre’s Bar at La Brasserie – Review

Last Friday Miss Mint and I went along to South Kensington to review a new addition to the bar scene in South Kensington, Pierre’s Bar. Pierre’s bar is housed inside the already popular restaurant La Brasserie on Brompton road. When we arrived on friday evening we were welcomed by friendly and amiable staff who showed us to our seats around the bar. The bar itself is shaped liked a square perfect for the staff to serve everyone easily and also for us girls to have a look at any man candy ;). For the next few hours we were entertained by our friendly and cheeky barman Alex who constantly kept our champagne flutes topped up and provided wasabi peas to munch on. Being situated in South Kensington the clientele are undoubtedly the well-heeled but with their extensive wine and cocktail list Pierre’s Bar should be on every party girls list to visit before they hit Boujis or Mahiki. If your planning to eat there as well it can get pretty busy so make sure you book in advance.

For more information visit http://www.labrasserielondon.com/pierres-bar/

Chiswell Street Dining Rooms – Review

Its been a busy couple of weeks socially and I kind of got behind on blogging. Sorry guys! However you are in for a treat as I have discovered a lovely new restaurant that I am sure you will fall in love with. I bring you Chiswell Street Dining Rooms! From the people who own The Cadogan Arms and The Botanist in Sloane Square. Chiswell Street Dining Rooms describes itself as “a modern British restaurant and cocktail bar complete with seven private dining rooms and is now open all day, everyday from 7am serving breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner”. I was lucky enough to be invited to the opening party last week. This place is a little treat that I recommend everyone should visit (and I am not just saying that because they plied me with free champagne hehe). The interior of the restaurant is contemporary and modern but although it looks sophisticated the atmosphere is relaxed and welcoming. The restaurant is intimate and there are lovely hidden away areas which would make it perfect for a date or equally a private business lunch. If the food is as good as the canapes we tasted then this place is bound to become a prize winner. They have an extensive wine list and the staff are helpful in making recommendations. The prices of mains range from 12 to 20 pounds so it shouldn’t break the bank! Ah the toilets! Absolutely divine, best toilets I have seen in a long while! They even have diamond encrusted taps! It seems that everything about this restaurant has been well thought out and details have not been overlooked. If you work near Liverpool Street this is the place to experience modern british dining at its best. Lanky Girl is definitely going to be visiting again soon!

 For information please visit http://www.chiswellstreetdining.com/