That bold red frontage in well-mannered Belgravia says it all: ‘we are here to have fun’. Ranald Macdonald – restaurateur, bon viveur and showman – is the host with the most, creating a Highland fantasy of first-class food, wine and live jazz. The interior is pleasingly ramshackle, with two dining rooms, two bars, a stage for performers and a cigar terrace – all spread across several floors in a blaze of tartan exuberance, complete with loads of pictures, dramatic furniture, hunting trophies and oriental carpets. You’ll eat extremely well courtesy of a menu sourced chiefly from Scotland – think salmon, scallops, venison, haggis and dry-aged beef, alongside flashy items such as lobster cocktail with shaved fennel and harissa mayonnaise. If you’re daunted by the huge wine list, go for one of Boisdale’s excellent own-label wines, or something from the superlative whisky list.
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