Every year I catalogue my favourite and not so favourite places that I dined in throughout and 2015 is no different. My list is made up of my own experiences which is not only down to the quality of food, but also the service, atmosphere and the overall enjoyment.
If you want to see my best & worst from previous years, you can do so by clicking here.
The Ones I Just Kept Going Back To:
1. Charlotte’s Place, Ealing Common
Even though I was invited to review Charlotte’s Place, I won’t be quick to forget the warm sunny day overlooking the common whilst being served a wonderful tasting menu paired with great wine. The meal was truly outstanding and one of the very few times I was blown away. If you haven’t been, what are you playing at?
2. ROKA, Various Locations
One of my favourite dinners in London was at ROKA when I visited with fellow bloggers Angie, Mehreen & Gary. Not only was the sushi exceptional but each dish was picture perfect and tasted just as good. What I remember most, was having an evening filled with laughter and there certainly isn’t a better place to do that than at ROKA.
3. NOPI, Soho
I visited NOPI earlier in 2015 but the main reason it’s so high on the list is because of how I felt about the food. Vegetables, I love them but I’m a carnivore at heart but what NOPI does, is make dishes sing by creating innovative dishes and truly making the vegetables stand out.
4. Bob Bob Ricard, Soho
Bob Bob Ricard is one of those restaurants everyone has heard and instagrammed as the sheer luxury of the establishment with its train carriage decor and exceptional service really does make you feel like royalty. Then you munch on the food and you’re relieved that the food is just as good as everything else.
5. Kouzu, Belgravia
Another Japanese restaurant in my top 10 but unlike ROKA, Kouzu not only serves traditional sushi but dishes with a modern European twist. Surprisingly, one of the stand-out dishes was the baby chicken and it was certainly the best chicken I’d had all year.
6. Kanada-Ya, Covent Garden
Oh Kanada-Ya I’ve been dying to try you but the queue was always far too long for me to wait in the cold. Then one winter evening Bone Daddies was closed and I finally made it. Was it worth it? Was it as good as everyone says it was? Yes & Yes.
7. Bourne & Hollingsworth, Clerkenwell
2015 was the year of brunch and for me, Bourne & Hollingsworth easily takes the crown from last year’s winner Caravan as being THE place to go for Sunday brunch-ing. If it wasn’t so busy, I’d be going back every single weekend.
8. Blacklock, Soho
One of my favourite new openings of the year was Blacklock. With its mouth-watering meat and easy on the eyes price tag, it’s no surprise that the ex-Hawksmoor chef has managed to make Blacklock an ever so popular joint for carnivorous foodies.
9. Augustine Kitchen, Battersea
Augustine Kitchen sits well with me because it was one of the best weekends I had this year with wonderfully silky champagne and food that just kept getting better. The cod was some of the best white fish I’d tried to date and the best part? It’s a quaint, intimate restaurant that isn’t a nightmare to book.
10. Granger & Co, Various Locations
Bourne & Hollingsworth is still my pick for brunch but Granger & Co in Clerkenwell always has seats available on a Sunday morning and since it’s round the corner from where I live, well it’d be rude not to drag my hungover-self.
The One That Just Missed Out:
City Social, City of London
City Social was the best Michelin restaurant I visited in the year and the food matched with the London skyline is phenomenal. If I was judging the restaurant solely based on these two factors, it would have easily made my top 5 but the reason it didn’t, was purely down to service. It was a special occasion (ahem my birthday) and the whole afternoon fell a little flat. Such a shame.
The One I Wish I Could Go Back To:
I wanted to write down one or two restaurants I would have loved to have been able to return to, however, when it boiled down to it I just couldn’t pick between them. There is only one way to describe my trip to Rome; magical. Instead I just want to revisit the city and the favourite spots we managed to find including Casa Bleve, Pagnanelli, Giolitti and Da Fabrizio.
The One that Shouldn’t Serve Food:
Hardcore Lobster & More, Victoria
Surprisingly, this category is usually one I find easy to boil down to but this year has truly been a year of excellent dining however Hardcore Lobster & More was just that restaurant that stood out as being far too terrible from the run-down interior, to the terribly frozen lobster to the lack of innovity, the whole restaurant is just a disaster from start to finish.
The One that’s Overrated:
John Doe, Ladbroke Grove
Whenever I pick a restaurant to dine at, copious amounts of research goes into it. That includes looking at the menu, price but most importantly both critic and blogger food reviews. Afterall, the last thing I want to do is spend my hard-earned cash on a restaurant that is abysmal.
John Doe was the restaurant that was sung praises from both bloggers and critics alike but unfortunately on my visit, the food was two-dimensional but the worst aspect was choking on the smoke that was coming from Bertha, the charcoal oven. There was certainly plenty of potential but on the night of visiting, I was relieved once I was out of the door.