Thanks to a harmonious mix of fine Loire wines and carefully crafted European food, it’s been a fruitful time for this Waterloo veteran since opening its doors in 1980. RSJ’s interior remains understated – all crisp linen, light wood and cool grey walls – while relaxed, convivial service and a crowd of loyal regulars ensure that the place runs along healthily. The carte promises some complex treats, from warm mackerel with poached quails’ eggs, balsamic onions and tapenade to chocolate and almond cake with caramel mascarpone cream and orange sauce, but it’s also worth taking advantage of the set menu (£16.95/19.95 for two/three courses) if you’re happy to sample the likes of smoked chicken and foie-gras terrine followed by braised onglet with horseradish dumplings, buttered kale and parsley jus. Wine tastings, themed evenings and cookery demos also help to keep things fresh. BEST BUY WHITE 2009 Claude Papin, Clos de Coulaine, Savennières, Loire Valley, France, £25.95. BEST BUY RED 2009 Domaine de la Perrière, Baudry-Dutour, Chinon, Loire Valley, France, £19.95.
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