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|Address:||48 Newman Street, London W1T 1QD|
|Tel:||020 3667 1445|
|Price: £41.00||Wine: £14.00||Champagne: £58.00|
|Opening Hours:||Mon-Sat 12N-3.30pm 6-10.30pm Sun 10.30am-5.30pm|
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If you've got 3 and a half hours to have dinner on a school night, then by all means drop into Newman Street Tavern. It takes 20 minutes for our first drink, a toffee apple cocktail, to arrive as we wait in the (not very busy) bar downstairs. It was delicious but I suppose thirst is a potent tonic. It takes us a while to order food once we're all gathered upstairs, partly because we confusingly get 3 menus each, partly because there is a great range of tempting fish and meat dishes (not much for veggies btw!), and partly because it takes an age for the staff to come. Sadly my meal wasn't really worth the wait. I had almost finished the glass of manzanilla which was supposed to “go” with my starter by the time that actually arrived and could have done with another, or better yet something stronger, to wash down the ham which was disappointingly one part treacle cured to 99 parts salt. All I can remember of my main (some sort of seafood pie) is the final mouthful of slimy white fish which ruined an otherwise OK, bisque-y flavoured dish. The boys chose wisely ordering Monday's speciality: an amazing steak which absolutely melts in the mouth. But the triple cooked chips it came with? Either the restauranteurs are just jumping on the “triple-cooked” bandwagon here thinking we won't notice that these are bog-standard fries instead of super duper crunchy on the outside, fluffy on the inside chunks of starchy heaven as invented by Heston or they were running so behind they didn't have time for all 3 cooking stages. Desserts were interesting but not worth missing the last tube home for. The atmosphere is very “Fitzrovia” (arty shots of What You're About to Eat Before It Was Killed on the walls) so it's not a bad place to spend a protracted evening with friends. Just don't come if you've got an early morning meeting the next day.