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|Address:||5 Pollen Street, London W1S 1NE|
|Tel:||020 7870 3730|
|Price: £49.00||Wine: £24.00||Champagne: £70.00|
|Opening Hours:||Mon-Sat 12N-2.30pm, 6pm-10.30pm|
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
After having thoroughly enjoyed Pollen Street Social on several occasions, I approached Little Social with some anticipation, intrigued as much as anything to see whether Jason Atherton could continue to work his magic in another restaurant formula or whether Pollen Street’s smaller sibling would be an example of brand-extension-gone-too-far, an unnecessarily bold incursion situated directly opposite its precursor. In the end, it was a bit of an anti-climax, good, but not exceptional. Overall, if I wanted to have a similar experience at a similar price point, then I would choose nearby Wild Honey over Little Social. The comparison between the two is deliberate since my first impression on stepping into the latter was that I had perhaps gone to the former. One enters through a thick dark red curtain (almost exactly the same in both restaurants); there is a somewhat ‘clubby’ and comforting feel to the place (ditto) and one passes a bar before being seated at either tables or booths (ditto again; we got a booth – a definite positive, and a more intimate experience). The comparison doesn’t end there, with both an a la carte and a competitively priced set menu available in the two restaurants, the dishes spanning modern British comfort-oriented food with the odd fancy twist. In terms of the food itself, my starter of crab, tomato and radish salad with miso tomato dressing and marinated beetroot was beautifully presented (as were my comrades’ dishes) but over-engineered and curiously lacking in any discernible flavour. This was compensated for by the main of a braised lamb shank served with peas, broad beans and spring vegetables, rich and juicy yet delicate too. We enjoyed our wines, drawn from a fairly inventive list (hints of the Loire and several Spanish regions in addition to the usual suspects), but if I were to quibble further, then I would also suggest that the service could be upped a notch a two, especially given that the restaurant is not without its competitors (see above). Our waitress, for example, seemed decidedly gauche, especially when serving and pouring the wine and asking how our dishes were, almost forcibly interrupting our conversation on more than one occasion. Little Social needs perhaps to think a bit bigger (and better)…