I am quite partial to lunch dates with my friends from work as they always take me to lovely places. I feel that my blog, being called Lorilee's London, is lacking in the London posts at the moment. Infact it has been lacking them for a while now and I want to revive that by starting I with sharing my favourite places to eat.
I write this post in no particular order as I like all of the restaurants mentioned below and have been to them a few times. I have however, structured this post to feature all the restaurants which are on the same street. This is a very picture heavy post and contains lots of food. You may want to get a snack whilst you read this as I needed one to write this post. I also didn't quite realise how many restaurants I have been to and would recommend.
First up - Bills Restaurant - one is located in Covent Garden and the other on Brewer Street in Soho. I have been to both and both are equally as good. I went this week with my friend for a birthday lunch. I had the fish finger sandwich and he had macaroni and cheese.
We went for lunch on Thursday lunch time and was asked at the door if we had booked, answer to that was no. This was not a problem as the waitress found us a table for two. Another friend had been to Bills before and didn't like sitting on the long tables you have to share with other people. I'm sure if you tell the waitress this she will find you somewhere else to sit.
We sat down, looked at the menu and decided our drinks and food with in five minutes of sitting down. One thing about lunching in soho at 1pm, any day of the week, it is busy. I have 1 hour for lunch and have to be back for 2pm so the next person can go. I find if restaurants are too slow at taking your order and bringing you your food then I will not be finishing my meal as I have to get back to work, but Bills had this covered. We ordered our food and drinks. Drinks came within 5 minutes, maybe less. Them the food arrived within 10 minutes giving me a whole 45 minutes to eat and chat. I can't work out if I talk too much over lunch or I take too long to eat. Either way the waitress in Bill's was really friendly and the food was delicious.
If I were to describe Bill's menu I would say homemade food with fanciness.
Next restaurant is Dozo on Old Compton Street. I have been to this restaurant 2 times in total and on both occasions the food has been great. The service on the other hand is not as speedy as I would like. The waiters are attentive and bring you your food pretty quickly, but when it is time to pay they are not as quick as I would like. I need to be back for 2 and don't want to have to sprint back to work.
This is a selection of the lunch menu that I took a snap of. The bento box is my favourite thing to order
My Aloe Vera juice which I love to order in Asian restaurants.
My bento box came with a miso soup. I have never drank the whole miso soup before but this time I did. Quite tasty actually.
Me with my yummy Bento Box which is a must when going to Dozo.
I had the chicken teriyaki box, which has a mound of rice, chicken teriyaki, salad and dumplings.
My friend had a Katsu curry which looked just as tasty as my food.
Tuscana located on Old Compton Street. Newly opened in summer 2013. Serves really yummy food with a Tuscan flavour. My boyfriend had lemon ham or something like that. It was ok, but mine was delicious.
It was mozzarella with beef and bacon or maybe it was mushrooms and not beef. I cannot remember, but what I can remember is that I really liked it. It tasted wonderful. They serve your food on wooden trays with a sheet of baking paper. The only down side about the baking paper is that it rips when you cut the bread with a knife and fork so you have to watch out you are not eating the paper.
Made in Italy is located on Old Compton Street. It has a real fire stone oven where they stone bake the pizzas. I went there with my friend in the summer and ordered a lemonade. This time I don't think it was homemade.
We ordered our pizzas and thought they would come separate, but they cooked it together like this. Good job I didn't order a meat pizza as I don't think my friend would have eaten hers as she's a vegetarian. They serve your pizza on a funky little stand.
Moaz located on Old Compton Street - it sells falafel pittas or falafel boxes. I always go for the box because you can cram more in. You order your box which comes with 5 falafel balls and optional humous for 50p extra and you move along the counter picking and choosing your veg.
You then end up with a box like this. It is really healthy and tasty for a lunch time meal.
Café Boheme located on Old Compton Street - a traditional Parisian bistro. I went there with my friends from work and had a croque Monsieur. It's really dark in the restaurant due to the lighting, but the atmosphere is a buzz.
One of my friends had the same as me and the other friend had eggs Benedict (I think). One of my friends had a discount card, because we work in the area. But had we not have had the discount card the bill would have been £45 between 3 of us. Quite expensive just for lunch.
Herman Ze German also located on Old Compton Street. This restaurant only opened in the summer of 2013 and I had to go give it a try. I ordered the curry wurst and received this. This wasn't what I was expecting I was expecting the wurst to be curry flavoured, but instead I receive a wurst, with lots of ketchup poored over it and curry powder sprinkled on top.
I really enjoyed my drink I picked up from there.
Next up on the tour of restaurants is BRGR located on Wardour Street. BRGR is a burger restaurant that sells amazing burgers, hot dogs and salads.
A must try is their homemade lemonade. It comes in this large glass that's big enough for a gold fish to make a lovely home.
The last time I went there I had the hot dog and cheesy fries. I think the bread is homemade, I looks like it and doesn't taste stodgy like normal bread it's nice and fluffy, with a brown glow. Although this meal lacks any form of vegetables it is really tasty.
The chilli fries are recommended. They are fries with chilli on top. You can also purchase messy chilli fries, which is fries with chilli and cheese.
My boyfriends burger when we went there last. They always place the salad on the side of the burger so you can choose whether to have it or not. They also ask how you like your burger cooked, which my boyfriend loves as he likes his medium rare, whereas I like mine to be medium well.
Côte on Wardour Street is a fancy French restaurant that serves really delicious chicken with garlic butter and chips. They have other things on their menu but this is my favourite so far. I have only ever eaten these once and this is what I had. The staff in there were friendly and came over quite a lot to see how our food was, which is always nice.
Imli street located on Wardour Street. I went there with my friend Jo when it opened up in the summer. It is an Indian restaurant that serves Indian tapas. I ordered the Pomergrante drink, which unfortunately I did not like. The seeds kept getting stuck up the straw and preventing me from drinking the juice.
This chicken wrap I had was yummy. Although it doesn't look much I was full after eating it. The green sauce was a little spicy but not too hot for my taste buds.
Honest burger located on Meard Street in Soho. It's a little street just off Wardour Street. Palms of Goa used to be in that restaurant before Honest Burger moved in. You must try the homemade lemonade in Honest Burger as it's yummy and it comes in these funky jam jars with handles.
Honest Burger sells homemade fancy Burgers with delicious rosemary and thyme seasoned chips served in fancy old fashioned white bowls. When you are served your burger they only provide you with a knife and you have to ask for a fork of you want one. I would rather they supplied the fork at the same time as the knife as I won't eat my meal without a fork. Sounds precious I know but it's how I like to eat. I eat the chips first and then the burger.
The caramelised onions are delicious. I am not sure if they come with all the burgers but choose one that has them and you can decide for yourself. When it comes to paying the bill the waitress brings it over to you in a fancy old tin, which is cool. The tins are all from British brands.
Marharani can be found on Berwick Street. They have a lunch time deal which is a meal and these yummy sauces for £7.50 or something like that. You get a choice of meat chicken, lamb and beef, if I remember correctly. You need to order as soon as you get in there because the food takes a while to come, I assume because it's freshly cooked.
I ordered the chicken set meal, which comes with rice, chicken, naan, salad, apples and potatoes.
Tasty Lebanon also located on Berwick Street is as it's name says Tasty Lebanese food.
There are plenty of set meals to choose from and if you don't fancy these then you can just order a wrap or a burger or what ever takes your fancy. I have to say that we have been to this restaurant several times and ordered the same thing each time we go and we have never been charged the same price or the price on the board. It always seems to be less, which is great because the food there is gorgeous.
I had the chicken shawarma wrap with chips.
I love the pink pickles that are wrapped up inside. They are so crunchy.
Comboco located on Berwick Street sells warps, salad boxes and baguettes rammed full of your favourite fillings. They also have a loyalty card that allows you to get a free item after buying 11.
First up you are asked to choose what you want. I always have the brown wrap with BBQ pork. Although I have tried the humous and chicken.
They then pile your wrap up with vegetables you can have a selection or like me you can say I'll have a bit of everything and end up with a wrap that is way to big to close.
Once you are done with your fillings the bloke on the end wraps your wrap up for you. My wrap was too big to be wrapped by the normal wrap man and the till man had to be called to wrap up my wrap. However, he was about to touch my food wearing gloves that he had been touching the money with. I didn't want to have to go through the queue again and fill up my wrap so I asked if he could change his gloves, which he did.
The finish inked wrap. It's huge.
Mr Falafel another one located on Berwick Street but this time on the market. He is usually parked up opposite the co op and has a shed where he serves his falafel and makes his own wraps. This is lovely and only costs £4 or £6 depending if you want regular or large.
Pit Stop located on Berwick Street Market. They did have a shop next to papaya, but this has closed and they are back out on the market again. They usually have a large queue outside their white van. You place your order and then stand to the side, whilst they take someone else's order and they cook your food. My boyfriend loves this place as it's really cheap Chinese food.
Jade garden Chinatown Soho - my boyfriend found this restaurant because a famous chef had recommended it as a must to visit. I was not disappointed, the dumplings were delicious.
As was my honey lemon iced tea. I ordered a beef dish and everytime I go to the Chinese the beef is always chewy and stringy. This was no different so I just ate the veg and passed my beef to my boyfriend to eat.
Bibimbap - located on Greek Street in Soho. This is a Korean restaurant. My boyfriend had been here for lunch with work people and then took me there to sample the delights.
It is lovely in there the walls are covered with Polaroid pictures of previous customers and the staff are friendly and attentive. They will not serve you until both guests arrive. The first time I went they would not let me have a table for 2 without the other guest being present. It does get busy in there so if your party is not ready then I understand why they do this.
I ordered the honey lemon tea, which I can down in a matter of seconds, because it tastes so good. My boyfriend ordered the Korean Tea which is delightful.
It tastes a little like popcorn because of what they put in the tea, but it is delicious.
The first time I went there I ordered chilli chicken and rice. I don't like spicy food so I swaped my food with my boyfriends.
He ordered the beef bool go gi with veg and a raw egg the bowl the food is served in is red hot and you are warmed by the waitress not to touch it because it's so hot.
The bowl is hot enough to cook the raw egg as you stir it. I love this dish as it's packed full of vegetables and beef and the rice is crispy from where it has been sat in the red hot bowl.
Cafe El Buen Gusto is located on Frith Street in Soho. It's a small sandwich shop which serves really tasty sandwiches for a cheap price. I have been there a total of 3 times and the first time I got a hair in my sandwich, second it got an eyelash and I can't remember what happened on the 3rd time.
This is the tuna melt I had the first time of going there.
Then I had the beef and mustard. It's ok, but I prefer more adventurous food at lunch time when I dine out. Good food to take to the park and eat.
Yoshino - is a well known sushi shop located on Shaftsbury Avenue. It sells really cheap and nice sushi. This place allows you to go crazy with the amount you buy because it's so cheap. If I were to buy all of this in ITSU or Wasabi I think it would cost me a lot more than £6.
Slug and Lettuce - Chinatown. This is opposite the W hotel. We went there on Monday because it's half price on meals or 1 meal is free I can't remember the exact deal.
I ordered a burger with chips and this was yummy.
The desserts are delicious too, we shared this and I know Kit wanted to gobble it all up because it tasted so good.
The Crown and Two Chair Men - located on Dean Street. I went here for lunch with my 2 friends from work in the summer. I had a chicken club sandwich and chips. As you can see it was massive! I didn't get to finish this before my lunch was over because they took so long to take our order and served the food I ended up wrapping one of the sandwiches in a napkin to take back to work, but it got soggy and I didn't get to eat it. I need to remember to bring Tupperware out with me when I go to lunch as I never finish my food fast enough. It tasted good the bits that I did eat.
Soju - located on Great Windmill Street. Another Korean restaurant. If you don't know I like Korean food.
I was given a miso soup and some fermented vegetables covered in chilli sauce.
I ordered chicken Katsu curry and I know this is a Japanese dish, but the Koreans do it slightly different. The chicken was cold and the sauce tasted a bit like brown sauce although I couldn't put my finger on the exact taste. It was good nonetheless.
Bodeans - located on Poland Street close to Oxford Street. Serves BBQ food. They are well known for their Burnt Ends. Although I have never had them myself. I ordered my favourite iced tea.
Then opted for the chips and hot dog with cheese. Their sauce is amazing.
De Hems - located on Macclesfield Street which is near Chinatown. We ordered a sharing platter and this was delicious. Especially the cheese you dipped your chips into. The staff were friendly and quick to take your order.
Wasabi - I know it's not a restaurant as such like most of the places listed above, but I really like going to get this large pot of chicken curry and rice from the Wasabi On Oxford Street. All the Wasabi's in Soho serve their curries in different containers and you don't get as much. So walking that bit further is worth it.
The joint Brixton - I know this one isn't in Soho like the rest, but it deserves a mention as the food from there was amazing. In Brixton village there is a small restaurant that serves pulled pork burgers. You cannot sit inside as the shop is mostly the kitchen and a till. Where you sit is outside in the path away on benches. The owners supply you with rugs to go over your legs if you get cold, I was cold so these were great. The tables are pieces of wood balenced on top of bread trays. It looks quite funky.
This pulled pork is juicy and delicious although a little messy to eat so be sure to keep a hold of your napkin.