bob bob ricard soho london

Dinner Dates in London 

It’s that time of the week when I use these delicious food photos to get you through the last days of this week! And then it’s BANK HOLIDAY! So expect 2 back to back posts to get you ready for the weekend in London 😀 Looking for dinner around London town but not sure where to go?! Well, I’ve got a place set for almost every occasion! 😀 Let’s kick it off with something decadent…

Bob Bob Ricard, Soho W1F 9DF:

It was my friend’s Hen dinner and we wanted to go some where fun that did great food too! I had been saving Bob Bob Ricard for a special occasion and how much more special can it be other than my friend’s hen dinner?! We made a reservation in the dining area downstairs. Cosy and decadent booths spread around with a special surprise in each. The very much coveted ‘Press for Champagne’ button that this place is quite famous for!

I ordered the Filet Mignon Rossini along with the truffled mashed potatoes. The presentation was impeccable and that was one helluva tasty plate of food! I finished it wanting more. Everything on that plate was cooked perfectly and married really well.

Filet Mignon Rossini- 28 day aged scotch beef with seared Foie Gras and confit apple served with truffle gravy £29.50

I could’ve finished that pot of truffled mashed potatoes on my own and for once, I could actually taste the truffle. (CARBS FOR LIFE!)

The star of the night HAD to be the BBR Signature Chocolate Glory. It was a mini presentation where the glistening golden ball was placed in a plate in front of me. The waiter then proceeded to pour a rich chocolate sauce over it and a little surprise started to reveal itself. It was the best goddam tasting surprise I’ve ever had! It was filled with chocolate jivarra mousse, pieces of chocolate brownie, berries and passionfruit and orange jelly…I died a little and a part of me landed in heaven! If you’re going there for the first time- you HAVE to order this dessert.

dessert at bob bob ricard
BBR Signature Chocolate Glory- £12.50

For more information, bookings and menu- check out their website here.

Dishoom, Covent Garden WC2H 9FB:

Note: Dishoom Covent Garden is currently closed for refurbishment and will re-open on Monday 31st August. 

Dishoom is my staple modern Indian cafe/restaurant to go to. Whether it’s breakfast, lunch or dinner- this place has it covered. They’ve kept on updating their menu and innovating it which is the most important thing. I’ve talked about these guys so many times on the blog that I feel I should just let the photos do the talking.

My friends and I decided to go here for to pig out on a massive dinner.

As always, everything was cooked really well except the Okra Fries were a bit dry and the Gunpowder Potatoes lacked seasoning (which can be subjective and according to taste). Everything else was very satisfactory and we rolled ourselves out. Fortunately or unfortunately, one of our friend forgot where he parked his car so after walking around the Seven Dials TEN times we definitely digested all that food.

Salivate away!!

These Far Far or Papad (we used to call back home in Pakistan) were so moorish. They’d added a bit of spice to it too. I used to have these as a snack all the time when I was a kid. They come in various shapes- stars, small round ones that you can fit on your fingers, flower shapes and what not! Definitely induced a hint of nostalgia there…. *sniff*

starters at Dishoom Covent Garden
FAR FAR A sort of carnival of snackery, halfway between crisp and cracker. Colourful, lemony, salty. (V)2.50
meat starters in Dishoom london
KEEMA PAU A classic of Irani Cafés: spiced minced lamb and peas with a toasted, buttered pau bun. (S)5.20
PRAWN KOLIWADA Bombay’s Koli (fishermen) Wada (district) recipe: a bowl of delicate, crispy morsels with tamarind and date chutney. (S)5.90
DISHOOM CALAMARI Tiny tender squid, grainy crumb crunch, quick-fried and tossed into a bowl with Dishoom drizzle. (M)5.50
OKRA FRIES Fine lady’s fingers for the fingers. (V)3.70
MURGH MALAI Chicken thigh meat is steeped overnight in garlic, ginger, coriander stems and a little cream. Still slightly pink when fully cooked. (M)7.50
BLACK HOUSE DAAL A Dishoom signature dish — dark, rich, deeply flavoured. It is simmered over 24 hours for extra harmony. (V)4.90
CHEF’S COVENT GARDEN SPECIAL PRAWN MOILEE From the Malabar Coast to Malabar Hill via the jazz clubs of Bombay. Finest prawns (with finest tails) in a South Indian-style golden broth of onions, mustard seeds, garlic, ginger and chilli, tempered with coconut milk. 14.90
GUNPOWDER POTATOES The seduction is in the tumble. Potatoes with brown skins, smoky-grilled, broken apart, tossed with butter, crushed aromatic seeds and green herbs. (V)5.90
CHICKEN BERRY BRITANNIA The Dishoom variation on the legendary Irani Café special, with cranberries. 8.50
KACCHI LAMB Marinated lamb and rice cooked together in the traditional Hyderabadi style. (S)9.50

The surprise delight of the evening was the Memsahib’s Mess- a take on the classic British Eton Mess. Now I am not a fan of that dessert and what started with “I will just have a bite” turned into a bowl wiped clean!! So, I will definitely recommend this dessert to anyone 😀

MEMSAHIB’S MESS What the Memsahibs of Malabar Hill used to serve at their fancy parties. Fresh cream, crushed meringue and strawberries with rose syrup and gulkand. (V)5.20

Guess what!?  These guys are opening a new branch in Carnaby Street in Autumn this year. Here’s hoping the queuing will ease up!!

For more information, branches, menu etc- check out their website here.

East Street Restaurant, Rathbone Place W1T 1HJ:

I’ve walked past this place so many times but never went in to eat. I’m SO glad I did as it’s definitely one of those chilled out lunch or dinner places I would go back to, with friends, again and again!

The food is delicious, fresh and cooked to a really good standard. It’s such a colourful and fun place to be. Cool vibes and smiles all around, no pretences- just good, wholesome, honest Pan Asian food! 😀

If you’re visiting London, then go visit these guys are they are right in the middle of Oxford Circus and Tottenham Court Road.

You can also ask them to add or take out certain ingredients for example, I don’t eat pork so told them to take that out of the Char Kway Teow and they very graciously did!

CHAR KWAY TEOW / MALAYSIA Spicyness level 1 The hawker stall classic: ho fun noodles with prawns, clams, char sui pork & squid in a chilli, garlic & dark soy sauce £11.25


For more information, location and menu, check the website here.

Tapas Revolution, Shoreditch E1 8JW:

I LOVE Spanish food. If we’re being real, I love ALL kinds of food but Spanish food has a special place in my heart. I love the sharing concept of friends and families gathering around big tables and just sharing the food with small nibbles here and there. Tapas Revolution has been around for a few years but I’ve recently seen them expanding their operations and they’ve moved east side into the trendy and “hipster” locales of Shoreditch!

So, my friend and I hustled our way through the streets of Shoreditch to seek out our Spanish fix for the evening. If you’ve been following me on Periscope, then you would have seen a live tour of the restaurant and the food too! So make sure you follow me @foodiarieslondon on Periscope! 😀

Every meal should start with CARBS so made sense to begin our food coma with Pan con Tomate. Perfectly grilled bread with generous lashings of penjar tomatoes, olive oil and garlic. We were off to a good start!

Pan con tomate · £2.95 grilled bread rubbed with garlic, penjar tomatoes and olive oil

No Spanish meal is complete without Croquetas or Croquettes (as we call them in Britain) so we ordered a variation of those that were made with sweet piquillo pepper and smoked cheese béchamel. Obviously you can’t beat the originals with potatoes (mmm carbs) but these were quite good too although for me, personally, they lacked seasoning which is quite subjective.

Croquetas de piquillos e Idiazábal · £5.25 sweet piquillo pepper and smoked cheese bechamel croquettes

One of my favourites was steamed octopus dish i.e. Pulpo a la gallega which is something I had in Malaga. It was almost exactly the same, except of course the fresh seafood that is readily available in Malaga. Even looking at this photo makes me salivate…ah hunger pangs!

Pulpo a la gallega · £7.25 steamed octopus with new potatoes and smoked pimentón

We almost didn’t order the classic Spanish omelette aka Tortilla de patata. It was perfectly seasoned and cooked! A dish so simple yet a perfect example of, if cooked well, can do wonders for your taste buds. It’s something I would order again…and again…and AGAIN!

Tortilla de patata · £5.25 Classic Spanish omelette with potato and onion

I always order Padron peppers and they are something I’m seeing on menus quite often! Even though they are sweet peppers rather than the spicy ones, the grilled texture and the seasoning makes them a perfect side dish to your meal.

Pimientos de Padrón · £5.25 fried sweet green peppers

I love paella. Again, it’s made with rice (more carbs, of course) so that’s one reason to love it and the fact it’s loaded with such rich flavours and ingredients in a single pot. It’s the ultimate sharing all-in-one dish. We ordered seafood pasta but the creamier version. This dish has to be the one that gave us a high and then the ultimate low of the evening. The flavours were perfect. The dish was presented really well and the big fat juicy prawns were there waiting to be devoured along with the generous helping of mussels, artichokes and squid. But who knew those big pink juicy prawns would hold a dirty secret. When I de-shelled one of the prawns, liquid mixed with grit came gushing out which left quite a sour taste in my mouth and that dish was never the same again.

It pained me SO much to leave that dish almost uneaten. Of course, cooking with seafood is always tricky and the management were very happy that we informed them so they could avoid the same issue in the future. Full marks for taste but yes the prawns really ruined the dish for us. Will I order it again? Yes. Should they have a similar issue again? Well hope not. And if they do, well let them know! If you don’t, how will they know and improve? 🙂

Arroz meloso de gambas · £24 a creamier style, served with pink prawns, artichokes, mussels, squid, lobster stock and cooked in a clay pot

They don’t really have a dessert menu and the desserts keep on changing. They also do it in a very Spanish cafe style where the waiter tells you the desserts of the day and you choose the one you want there and then. I think it’s a fun way of doing desserts and keeps the menu interesting where you can introduce different desserts based on the weather, what customers wants, seasonal produce etc.

Torrija is a Spanish version of a bread and butter pudding that is served cold. After a heavy meal, the taste of the dessert was very light that served as a good ending to the dinner. However, the texture was a bit doughy. I loved the caramelised top that gave the dessert a nice crunch.

Torrija

All in all, a nice evening spent talking about food, life, work and everything in between with some delicious Spanish grub. Is it the best Spanish tapas restaurant in London? Not yet. But then for the price and what you’re getting in return, it fits the bill!

For more information, menus and location- check out their website here.

There you have it folks- four smashing places to take your friends, family or a special someone! Don’t say I don’t spoil you with some delicious choices 😀 Be sure to check these places out and who knows, there may be another post coming your way this Friday before the big BANK HOLIDAY!! Stay tuned and follow me on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and NOW Periscope! 😀 xx

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