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What's on the Menu? – A round-up of the latest restaurant reviews

16 October 2008 by

Bloomberg, 2 October
Richard Vines visits the River Café, Thames Wharf, Rainville Road, London W6
It is just one hour to the reopening of the River Cafe, closed for six months by a fire. Rose Gray, 69, is in the new humidity-controlled cheese room. Her friend and co-owner Ruth Rogers looks out to the small herb garden, beside the Thames, that serves the restaurant. The menu isn't even printed as the chefs are still deciding what's good. "We're so now, we're not even thinking about the fire any more," Rogers, 60, says of the blaze that closed River Cafe on April 5. "We're thinking about the food we're going to make. The staff is so excited about the beautiful new kitchen."
River Cafe - review in full >>

Metro, 14 October
Lucie Wood visits Jamie's Italian, 10 Milsom Place, Bath
Soseki, twinkling seductively under the lowering armpit of the Gherkin, is perfectly lovely, one of the most beautiful new restaurants I've visited in a long time. Like many restaurants in Tokyo or Kyoto, it looks very much like any old faceless modern block from the outside but climb the open-tread stairs and you'll find magic. Owner Caroline Bennett, creator of Moshi Moshi - Britain's first conveyor-belt sushi chain - has commissioned Japanese designer Yusaku Kaneshiro to recreate an evocative look based on the teahouses of early 20th-century Japan's Taisho period. It has worked gloriously, all dark wood panels and the gem-like beauty of embroidered kimono fabric (used to fabulous effect under glass tabletops), while ceilings are papered with the book covers of eponymous author and famously grouchy temporary Clapham dweller Natsume Soseki.
Jamie's Italian - review in full >>

Evening Standard, 15 October
Fay Maschler visits the River Café, Thames Wharf, Rainville Road, London W6

Last Tuesday, the second evening of service after a kitchen fire had led to six months of closure, devoted customers of The River Café were clutching each other with expressions and body language that brought to mind Theodore Géricault's painting The Raft of the Medusa. Tragic mismanagement by their captain Tony Blair and his successor Gordon Brown had left them at the mercy of a distinctly choppy sea. Alan Yentob could be seen waving a scarf. On the horizon, was that the reassuring flicker of a custom-built wood-fired oven on which they could pin their hopes?
River Café - review in full >>

Time Out, 16 October
Charmaine Mok visits Tierra Brindisa, 46 Broadwick Street, London W1

Tierra Brindisa - review in full >>

By Janet Harmer

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