Berber & Q Shawarma Bar
After learning the ropes under Ottolenghi, Josh Katz opened Berber and Q and started serving up some of the tastiest grilled meats around. It takes the same Middle Eastern and North African flavours that Yotam is famous for and pops them in a more relaxed setting. Shawarma (spit roasting) is the order of the day. This goes for lamb, chicken and cauliflower alike. Expect bowls of rice and lentils topped with Lamb shawarma, harissa and anchovy; or cauliflower shawarma with golden sultanas and pine nuts. To finish off we'll be locking our lips around an ice cream pita sandwich with tahini soft-serve and caramelised banana.
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Anglo is a great shout for that friend who thinks they know everything about food. Have they ever had crevettes with ash cream? Or lamb sweetbreads with almond butter? We don't think so. Mark Jarvis, the chef, plays around with traditional British products, modern cooking techniques and the odd world flavour like kimchi (fermented Korean vegetables) to create quite an extraordinary menu. The beer list is strong, the wine list is on point, the decor is simple and the evening taster menu is dazzling. You might think 10 courses is too much, but you are in expert hands here. From the tiny amuse bouches at the start to the perfectly balanced mains, each one is a carefully thought out piece of art - including the bread and butter.
The brains behind Hawksmoor have only gone and delivered another Foxlow shaped baby, this time in Clerkenwell. As always prepare for a meat-heavy menu, featuring all manner of steak cuts and a few vegan options like Spice-roasted cauliflower with chickpeas, wilted spinach and curried aubergine sauce. As with the other foxes, the decor is Mad Men-esque, the cocktails are inventive, Sundays are about epic roasts and Tuesdays are BYOB (corkage is free).
Morito: Exmouth Market
Exmouth market is like a goldmine of great restaurants and one of our favourites is Morito. The little sis of next door's Moro, this tapas restaurant is dishing out small Spanish plates ('spiced lamb, aubergine, yoghurt & pine nuts', 'beetroot borani, feta, dill & walnuts') and finely selected wines. Seating spills out front of the restaurant in summer and it's rammed all year round which give it a nice, buzzy, European vibe. Unfortunately you can't book in advance but it's worth hanging around for.
Exmouth Market’s old time hero Moro is an ever dependable restaurant serving Mediterranean dishes with a North African twist. Long time fans reckon the best seat in the house is at the bar where staff bring you tapas and top up your wine. We however took a pew at a table and ordered off the a la-carte menu. All the food is deliciously wholesome and tastes like the kind of grub your adoptive Spanish grandma might rustle up after a hard day’s work in the field. The charcoal grilled lamb served with cumin chickpeas and fig salad was a highlight and the fig ice cream pretty much stole the show. After professing our undying love for the ice cream, our waitress informed us that the dessert menu hasn’t changed for 15 years. Some might say this shows a lack of imagination but we say it’s is a decision well made - as grandma used to say - don’t fix what ain’t broken.