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Joel Antunes and Tom Aikens fall foul of the critics

21 June 2010 by
Joel Antunes and Tom Aikens fall foul of the critics

Writing in the Independent, John Walsh, says he does not like the cover charge nor the choice of plain and uninspiring brasseries dishes on offer at Brasserie Joel Park Plaza Hotel, London SE1. "My date Angie and I strove, without success, to find something that we hadn't eaten a thousand times before," he complains.

Jay Rayner of the Observer gives Tom Aikens' new venture, Tom's Terrace, a pasting, saying that he has rarely been to a more tawdry catering venture. "The combination of greed, sloth and lack of ambition is frankly breathtaking and all the more dispiriting for the opportunity missed," he says. His gripe centres on what appears to be a lack of input from Aikens and the steep mark-up on dishes which includes £6.50 for a bowl of truffle chips.

In the Sunday Telegraph, Zoe Williams writes a more favourable review of the Walnut Tree, near Abergavenny, where Shaun Hill has been leading the restaurant's revival for a couple of years. She says Caterer's description that the Walnut Tree has put Wales on the map as spot on and enjoys the menu for confidently offering dishes - such as Keralan fish and veal sweetbreads with sauerkraut - from different continents.

Meanwhile, Lucas Hollweg of the Sunday Times enjoys eating in a circular, open-sided thatched hut outside at the Black Rat, Winchester. He particularly likes the pared down Sunday lunch menu offering just three starters, three mains and three puds. "It's the sort of menu I generally like, too much choice sending me into a spin of indecision," he explains.

For this review in full and more, see What's on the menu? To book a table, see Caterer Eats Out. Visit Guide Girlfor the latest gossip from the fine dining world.

Review of the reviews >>](http://www.caterersearch.com/Topics/212/review-of-the-reviews.html)

[Shaun Hill takes the reins at the Walnut Tree >>](http://www.caterersearch.com/Articles/2008/02/28/319259/shaun-hill-takes-the-reins-at-the-walnut-tree.htm)

[Tom Aikens and Compass to launch two restaurants at Somerset House >>](http://www.caterersearch.com/Articles/2010/04/22/333105/Tom-Aikens-and-Compass-to-launch-two-restaurants-at-Somerset.htm)

By Janet Harmer

E-mail your comments to Janet Harmer here.

If you have something to say on this story or anything else join the debate at Table Talk - Caterer's new networking forum. Go to www.caterersearch.com/tabletalk

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