Sticks’n’Sushi – Covent Garden, London

Can you book? Yes
Food: 6/10
Atmosphere: 6/10
Price per person: £50

“Sushi is fish in haute couture” according to the waiters at Sticks’n’Sushi. At least that’s the slogan on their uniforms. The Google definition of haute couture is “expensive, fashionable clothes produced by leading fashion houses.” Replace ‘clothes’ with ‘fish’ and you’ve got a pretty accurate description of Sticks’n’Sushi! Continue reading

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Ivy Market Grill – Covent Garden, London

Can you book? Yes
Food: 3/10
Atmosphere: 7/10
Price paid per person: £27

I’ve never actually eaten at the Ivy (the real one), but given how popular (and expensive) it is I assumed its latest offspring, Ivy Market Grill would be pretty good. How wrong I was!

The surroundings are pleasant; it’s buzzy, the decor is full of oppulent velvets and dark rich colours, you feel very in the action and the crowd is glamorous. The food, however, was disappointing and I had a bad feeling as soon as I looked at the menu. Absolutely nothing excited me, and you should be able to pick up a menu and feel torn between at least two options, leaving the restaurant worrying that you may have missed out and planing ahead to your next visit to try more dishes. Continue reading

Five Guys – Covent Garden, London

Can you book? No (but you won’t have any problems)
Food: 10/10
Atmosphere: 7/10
Price paid per person: £10

Eating at Five Guys was such an efficient experience I’m going to summarise it in five short sentences, including this one.

By the time I thought about taking a picture of my Five Guys burger I had already gobbled it all up, that’s how good it was.

As my boyfriend will testify you really can order every single topping on the menu at no extra charge.

They give you free peanuts whilst you queue, still in their cases so you also have the fun of crushing them.

The buns are refreshingly simple (no fancy brioche), the meat is not overdone, you can be done in under half an hour, and for two burgers and regular spicy chips it cost £20.

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Lima Floral – Covent Garden, London

Can you book? Yes
Food: 6/10
Atmosphere: 5/10
Price paid per person: £40

A few years ago I went to the restaurant that occupied what is now the Lima Floral site. The food was very good but the lack of other people and atmosphere was disappointing. Oddly enough, years later something similar can be said of Lima Floral. Is it the fact that it’s on a cobbled side road and doesn’t get much passing trade? Or is it just timing, and had I gone a significant amount of time after Christmas it would have been heaving? Continue reading

Balthazar – Covent Garden, London

I didn’t plan to spend my evening at Balthazar. I went with a friend to the Lyceum theatre to try and wangle cheap tickets to see the Lion King on the premise that they would be keen to sell them with less than hour before it started. After all, what’s the point in singing Hakuna Matata to a half empty theatre. The box office didn’t seem to share our view and wouldn’t budge lower than £65 so we went on our way.

Where to go for dinner, we wondered. Then all of a sudden Continue reading