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John Lanchester finds the food at Silvena Rowe's restaurant Quince isn't quite as grand as the surroundings

04 July 2011 by
John Lanchester finds the food at Silvena Rowe's restaurant Quince isn't quite as grand as the surroundings

The food at celebrity chef Silvena Rowe's first solo restaurant, Quince at London's May Fair hotel, is not quite as grand as the restaurant's interiors, according to John Lanchester.

The Guardian‘s food critic says he "quite likes" the eastern Mediterranean-inspired menu but adds that due to Rowe's lack of professional kitchen experience, her food is more like that of a home cook.

"There is something underwhelming about that if your expectations are keyed to Mayfair, grande luxe and beautifully presented plates," he says.

Another high end hotel restaurant in London, Massimo Restaurant & Oyster Bar at the new Corinthia Hotel, is reviewed by The Times‘ Giles Coren, who finds very expensive food, which overall, isn't very good.

"It is not that I mind expensive," Coren says. "I'm a sucker for grand and haughty Italian if it is done with passion and freshness and a bit of sex appeal, like at Locanda Locatelli, Theo Randall or Zafferano. But that's not what is happening at Massimo."

The Independent‘s Tracey Macleod says Rocksalt in Folkestone, Kent, is almost a fairytale come true for Mark Sargeant, and Zoe Williams of the Sunday Telegraph says that the Corner Room may be a casual offshoot of Nuno Mendes' grander restaurant Viajante, but inferior it most certainly isn't.

Writing for the Observer, Jay Rayner says a visit to US-themed barbecue restaurant Red Dog Saloon on London's trendy Hoxton Square is a complete waste of his time, while Amol Rajan has a truly awful meal at the Peach Tree in Shrewsbury, Shropshire, where he hopes the chef called in sick.

Finally, the Sunday Times‘ AA Gill visits the Old Vicarage in Ridgeway near Sheffield where the cooking and ingredients, and the grasp of gastronomy are faultless.

Silvena Rowe at Quince at the May Fair >>

Massimo Restaurant and Oyster bar opens at the Corinthia hotel >>

For these reviews in full and more, see What's on the menu?](http://www.caterersearch.com/Articles/2011/07/04/339183/whats-on-the-menu-a-roundup-of-the-latest-restaurant-reviews.htm) Visit [Guide Girl](http://www.caterersearch.com/blogs/guide-girl/) for the latest gossip from the fine-dining world.

By Kerstin Kühn

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