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ARBUTUS CLOSED JULY 2016
The "stunning" Anglo-European food and an incredibly accessible wine list are just two of the reasons why this evergreen Soho heavyweight remains a "safe bet" in a crowded marketplace. A convivial counter suits those who want to eat more informally, while the strictly minimal dining room is favoured for its street-facing windows, "beautiful" bare-wood tables and black-leather benches. From the same gene pool as Mayfair's Wild Honey, Anthony Demetre's seasonal menu places offbeat ingredients at the heart of the Michelin-starred action: crispy lamb's testicle with tripe, warm pig's head with potato foam and pickled radish, a 'piece of beef' with ceps, bone marrow and salsa verde. Other glorious hits have included a fresh salad of broad beans and peas with sheep's ricotta and preserved lemon, "satisfying" saddle of rabbit with quinoa and carrots, and a stand-out dish of monkfish with girolles and gnocchi. To finish, don't miss the "best ever" plum clafoutis. Despite the odd gripe about "minuscule portions", escalating prices and "uninterested service", we're with those who reckon Arbutus is a "Soho treasure".
Arbutus has long been on my bucket list to try. I have been to the pop up that Anthony Demetre did at Tower 42 just before it became City Social and absolutely loved it (read my review here). For one reason or another I’ve just never gotten round to visiting Arbutus. When I received an offer for a 4 course meal plus welcome cocktail for £35 in my inbox, I decided to book the restaurant for my next girl’s get-together. Located in the heart of Soho, Arbutus was opened in 2006 by Chef Anthony Demetre and his business partner Will Smith. It has also held one Michelin star since 2007. It sounded perfect for our dinner.Arriving...
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Eating out in London: it can get bloody expensive. To the savvy glutton, though, there are some tricks for wheedling out the maximum bang for one’s buck. I’ve written before about Bookatable, whose £25 surf ‘n turf deal at the Hippodrome Casino is probably the best in town. (Especially if you accidentally boss the Black Jack table with your tenner-worth of free gaming chips and leave £40 up, ha!) They’ve really upped their game recently though, adding new deals at Michelin star restaurants that make fine dining more accessible. The website is not the easiest to navigate, but if you stick with it you can unearth some...
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