London Restaurants I’ve Been to Lately Camera-Free

My really good friend Emily (check out her blog, Curious London, it’s awesome) wrote a blog post about all the restaurants she has been to recently where she hasn’t photographed her food for the sole purpose of blogging about it and it inspired me to do a post of my own! Going to restaurants is probably one of my favourite things to do in my spare time. I know a few people who work in this industry and they inform me of any changes that their company puts in place. I began working with this company when I opened my restaurant, a quite well know company too. With the use of technology making it a lot easier, I did enjoy working in this environment. As I had to move house, I was unable to continue working there any longer. But I am sure the hospitality industry is moving in the right direction.

I have been out to eat at a few new places recently with my older sister and her husband visiting from the US and we went to some phenomenal restaurants I want to share with all of you! I didn’t take photos for the blog as it’s become really important to me to simply be in the moment and enjoy the company of others without dragging my camera out and snapping a bunch of photos whilst my family wait around to eat. So without further ado, have a read about some great restaurants that I think are worth checking out whether you’re visiting or living in London!

My older sister appreciates fantastic food about as much as I do, so anytime she visits us in London, I always scope out where to take her that I think she’ll love. During this trip, we enjoyed some great wine at The Wigmore, a classy pub attached to the historic Langham Hotel. I love everything about this pub, from the drinks to the food to the decor, it’s my kinda place. There is timber panelling, high ceilings and art deco facades with a few different rooms to kick back and relax in. It’s not your typical pub – it’s quite elevated and polished with a Soho House members’ club vibe but has no sense of pretentiousness at all. The menu is overseen by veteran chef Michael Roux Jr and as such, is more on the luxe side. Head there for after work drinks, match day pints or pre-dinner cocktails 🙂

After the Wigmore, we headed to Aline of Lebanon on Maddox Street in Mayfair for dinner. We’re both huge Middle Eastern food fans and the food here was great as was the decor. Expect a menu ranging from Lebanese olives, classic mezze and different meats and fish cooked on the charcoal grill. We indulged in the hummus and baba ghannouj with pomegranate seeds to share between us with warm flatbread right out the oven. Both the hummus and the baba were creamy and delicious. My sister had come from Beirut prior to stopping off in London and said it rivalled dishes she tried there, so that’s really saying something! For mains, we enjoyed the Shish Taouk, marinated chicken kebabs, perfectly seasoned and grilled to perfection. The hummus was so good, we ordered another helping to go with our Shish Taouk. To top it all off, we had to get the Baklawa made with almond, pistachio and pine kernels for a sweet treat. I would definitely go back for the hummus alone!

Next up is Picture Fitzrovia, a bit of a hidden gem that is actually too good not to share on here. There are two neighbourhood restaurants, one on Great Portland Street and the other in Marylebone. You will find wonderful modern European food at both restaurants and the friendliest front of house staff that make you feel right at home. Picture always has great deals going such as BYOB on Monday and Tuesday evenings, Wine Wednesdays, in which a selection of wines are 50% off their normal price and two for one tasting menu Fridays, where you can try the seasonal six-course tasting for £45! It’s one of the best meals I have had this year and It’s one of those restaurants I know I will return to time and time again.

The six-course tasting menu for £45 is such a great deal, I would recommend doing that if you go, but the catch is the whole table needs to order it as well. We went for the a la carte and loved each and every dish we had including the: Beetroot tartare, feta cheese, red endive, hazelnuts; Ravioli of pumpkin and caramelised onion, herb oil, Pecorino, Fillet of cod, roast cauliflower, razor clams, cocoa beans; Slow cooked Welsh lamb, butternut squash, Merguez, bulgar wheat; and the 28-day aged beef, celeriac, cavolo nero, bone marrow crumb. We brought our own vino as well since it was a Monday evening 🙂 Such a great experience and the team there are just so lovely.

I definitely recommend paying a visit to any of the above for various occasions! While I love taking photos, it’s sometimes quite nice to sit back, relax, enjoy the wine and indulge in utterly delicious food with great company. I originally wasn’t going to share as I didn’t have any photos to show for it, however, they are all too wonderful not to share on here and spread the word. I am really happy I got to spend some quality time with my sister and her husband for a few days and discover some new gems along the way.

If you blog or Instagram, have you ever taken a break from your camera to be more in the moment?

Colleen x