In the first London restaurant reviews of the New Year, Fay Maschler of the Evening Standard is deeply disappointed that her hope of eating at the special location that is the Ritz does not match up to expectations.
She had hoped for an experience that would "honour the special occasion, reward the financially reckless, soothe the resident, gratify the regular." Instead, she got "primped and tortuous accoutrements surrounding a lump of protein."
Meanwhile, Marina O'Loughlin, writing in the Metro, can't get enough of the Dean Street Townhouse, having eaten breakfast, lunch on several occasions and dinner there. It is her new favourite place in town and she loves everything from the clubby décor to the retro food, including the nursery staple of mince and potatoes.
In Notting Hill, Time Out food critic Guy Dimond enjoys tucking in to an eclectic mix of flavours at the newly-opened Chinese restaurant Seventeen, whose kitchens are headed by chef Wang (formerly with Ba Shan) and chef Yue, a specialist in Sichuan and Cantonese dishes.
By Janet Harmer
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