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|Address:||152 Tooley Street, London SE1 2TU|
|Tel:||020 3544 0839|
|Price: £47.00||Wine: £20.00||Champagne: £52.00|
|Opening Hours:||Mon-Fri 12N-2.30pm Mon-Sat 6.30-10pm|
3 of 3 people found this review helpful.
As locals and regulars (circa monthly) for the last few years – and with many meals under our expanding belts, we regard Magdalen as the best restaurant in the southbank Waterloo to Tower Bridge type area.
It attracts a very mixed crowd of diners – friends, lovers, anniversaries, birthdays, business. Despite many clients coming from local offices mid-week, the atmosphere remains very pleasantly relaxed and informal – helped by the staff. It’s also invariably very busy, giving it a good buzzy atmosphere.
The décor and furnishing adds to the warmth, although perhaps more suited to autumn / winter than summer: Dark woods, terracota colouring, thick curtains, a bit reminiscent of a traditional French bistro.
I think I would classify the food style as Anglo-French earthy, with a bias to high quality meat, game and offal dishes, plus increasingly fish. The style is relatively simple and traditional, but the food is always high quality, very tasty and full of great flavour, and sometimes very gutsy. Our favourite starters include superbly flavoursome quail, grouse or pigeon, and English Hertfordshire snails. Over our many many meals, the food has been reliably very good – very very rarely having an unenjoyable meal. We’ve had some excellent French style fish stews, with lots of big chunks of quality fresh fish, some of the best rib-eye we’ve ever eaten, plus a superb tasty suckling pig, with moist meat and a great crispy skin. However, such meals are probably not suited to a quick light snack !
Front of house and service is almost always very charming, friendly and professional, even when very busy. Not at all formal or pretentious.
The wine list is good, although it could do with more choice at the £25 /£30 end. We normally spend £35-£50, although sometimes more if we feel like a splurge.
Pricing seems very fair, and represents very good value for money given the high quality – and considerably better value than any other nearby restaurants, which we also know very well.
We seem to pay an average £65/£70 for 2 for 2 courses, ex drinks, inc service; although we tend to choose the more expensive dishes. Total bills tend to fluctuate around £150, very much determined by our wine choice.
Overall, an excellent restaurant, only a short hop from London Bridge station or Tower Bridge. Very hard to fault if you enjoy quality earthy food. They certainly deserve their continuing success. If they were located in France they would probably have a Michelin star.