Savini at Criterion 22

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The definition of elegance, this Grade II-listed neo-Byzantine beauty dates back to 1874 and offers fine Italian dining, at prices as high as the gold mosaic ceiling. The similarly opulent Savini restaurant in Milan dates back to 1867, making this venture a seemingly wise move following the Criterion Restaurant’s descent into administration in summer 2015. The dramatic room features a bar and lounge area, secluded grey booths, chandeliers and glittering marble pillars, soundtracked on our visit by slightly kitsch, old-fashioned Italian tunes and not much else: the room was almost empty (Savini was infamously without a phone line for four months after opening), sapping the atmosphere in such lofty surrounds. A lavish menu redresses the balance however, with not one bum note: pungent yet light artichoke risotto is drizzled with truffle sauce, crowned by carefully cooked pigeon breast; dense pappardelle ribbons are laced with the tang and pepper of wild boar ragu; a slab of foie gras tastes fresher and more vibrant than its appearance suggests, lifted by strands of candied lemon. All-Italian service is as friendly, knowledgeable and classy as this style of dining demands, while classic cocktails and a superb collection of wines offer similarly comprehensive support. Eye-wateringly high prices may also explain a lack of custom for a restaurant at the centre of London’s tourist hub. If the word gets out and London’s fine diners once again fill this historic space, Savini will be a stellar special occasion destination.

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Savini at Criterion
10

Savini at Criterion

224 Piccadilly ,London W1J 9HP

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Food and service does not live up to the wonderful room and setting

by   (2)

Jul 2017

The restaurant obviously benefits from a great central location and a wonderful room . This was the first time I had been here when under new ownership. Under the previous owner it was somewhere to go for good food, reasonably priced away from the Piccadilly crowds. However under the new ownership, the food and service does not live up to the room, decor or setting. The food was almost bland and a did not feel fresh. And was incredibly expensive. Service was a bit nonchalant. And the restaurant...

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Jules W.'s rating

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  • Food & Drink: 4
  • Service: 4
  • Atmosphere: 4
  • Value: 4

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Savini at Criterion

224 Piccadilly ,London W1J 9HP

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar fullstar halfstar empty

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You get what you pay for.

by   (1)

Oct 2014

This was some of the best food I have tasted, my dining partner enjoyed all 3 courses and the wine without finding any faults, which was a first. The menu seriously undersells itself. This will be a venue that will go straight to the top of my recommendations list if someone were to ask for one.

Stuart C.'s rating

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  • Food & Drink: 10
  • Service: 10
  • Atmosphere: 7
  • Value: 7

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Savini at Criterion

224 Piccadilly ,London W1J 9HP

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar fullstar emptystar empty

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by   (1)

Jun 2014

Had wanted to try Criterion for ages and our wedding anniversary was the perfect excuse for a treat. On arrival we were made very welcome and sat in the bar area as we were early, had to wait ages for a waiter and in the end had to get our own drinks menus, whilst various staff stood nattering. Eventually the drinks waiter came so we ordered and got our drinks. We moved to our table which was a OK but right by the kitchen door so not the best, after perusing the menu for a while we both knew what...

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Danny G.'s rating

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  • Food & Drink: 7
  • Service: 4
  • Atmosphere: 8
  • Value: 5

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Savini at Criterion

224 Piccadilly ,London W1J 9HP

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar fullstar fullstar full

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Friendly staff, relaxed atmosphere and fantastic food

by   bronze reviewer (5)

Jul 2013

I took my family to the Criterion on Saturday evening as I'd spotted the set menu deal of three courses for £25 with a glass of Pimms. The selection was sufficient, with a good range of foods and tastes catered for, and the dishes tasted fantasic. The waiters were exceptionally friendly – always wearing a smile and willing to help whenever they could. Food arrived very promptly yet we did not feel rushed. Decor was classic and timeless. Would highly recommend to others – especially with the brilliant...

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Carly W.'s rating

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  • Food & Drink: 10
  • Service: 10
  • Atmosphere: 10
  • Value: 8

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Savini at Criterion

224 Piccadilly ,London W1J 9HP

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar fullstar fullstar empty

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Great Very Ornate Vintage Leftover

by   gold reviewer (40)

Mar 2013

The guilded ornate gold leaf decor is probably quite off putting to the casually dressed younger tourists outside.This bastion of Piccadilly continues to service surprisingky unpretentious good value meals at the 20-30 pounds for one mark. Its almost an undiscovered gem. Remembered in The 1930s for hosting Sir Oswald Mosleys BUF Blackshirt dinners in grand Mussolini Style!! Toilets are immaculate and lavish.A staff member called a crumb brusher is assigned to you at your table. Meals are nouvelle...

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James C.'s rating

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  • Food & Drink: 7
  • Service: 8
  • Atmosphere: 10
  • Value: 10

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Savini at Criterion

224 Piccadilly ,London W1J 9HP

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar emptystar emptystar empty

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by   (1)

Feb 2012

Oh Criterion. I really wanted to enjoy your company, but what a dull companion you were. I'd expect the set menu to be a fair representation of what the rest of the menu could deliver, but the choice was really disappointing. A starter of ham hock terrine for him and smoked salmon mousse for me was fine, but only just – the terrine was pretty dull. The mains were a choice of cottage pie, seafood stew, and canneloni. I felt like I'd regressed to the 80's. The veal cottage pie was fine, with nice...

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Catherine B.'s rating

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  • Food & Drink: 5
  • Service: 5
  • Atmosphere: 5
  • Value: 4

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Savini at Criterion

224 Piccadilly ,London W1J 9HP

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar fullstar fullstar full

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by   (1)

Jan 2012

What can i say!!! WOW. me and my friends adore this resturant, we live in Southampton but always do trips to the theatre (for birthdays) and always finish with an excellent meal at the Criterion. We've never had an issue and the food is gorgeous. This resturant is a special treat for us, And the pianist just makes the evening complete. We've just booked up again for my birthday in March and cannot wait :)

Roxi M.'s rating

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  • Food & Drink: 10
  • Service: 10
  • Atmosphere: 10
  • Value: 10

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Savini at Criterion

224 Piccadilly ,London W1J 9HP

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar halfstar emptystar empty

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by   silver reviewer (19)

Dec 2011

Like many others, I've been coming to the Criterion on and off for a number of years now. Back in the days of the MPW ownership the food was usually excellent. How times have changed! I went for dinner last weekend with my sons to celebrate my sister's birthday and could not have been more disappointed. The menu itself was quite boring so I opted for the soup to start. It wasn't offensive but just wasn't great. My main of rump steak was similarly not great. Others in my party opted for the lamb and...

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the stranger's rating

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  • Food & Drink: 4
  • Service: 4
  • Atmosphere: 6
  • Value: 3

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Savini at Criterion

224 Piccadilly ,London W1J 9HP

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar halfstar emptystar empty

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by   silver reviewer (18)

Sep 2011

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

The Criterion is, without doubt, one of London's most beautiful restaurants with its gold mosaic ceiling and its perfect proportions (despite being located right in the heart of a part of London where natives never go). I used to come here quite a lot in its Marco Pierre White days and it invariably delivered (it later veered seriously off course), so a pre-theatre meal suggested a re-visit. we booked for 5.45pm (heaven forbid!). We were eight, with two youngsters and arrived in two groups of four...

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James J.'s rating

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  • Food & Drink: 5
  • Service: 6
  • Atmosphere: 7
  • Value: 4

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Savini at Criterion

224 Piccadilly ,London W1J 9HP

Overall rating: star fullstar fullstar fullstar fullstar empty

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by   (1)

May 2011

I had a theatre evening at Theatre Royal Haymarket, and emerged from the theatre wanting dinner. Upon entering the Criterion, I feared a tourist trap but was very pleasantly surprised. The place was busy, though tables were available (probably not likely if I'd tried walking in before the theatre). The room is very beautiful, a combination of good lighting, beautiful accoutrements, and elegance. I found the post-theatre menu to be an excellent value—a choice of two or three courses for a set price....

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Elaine L.'s rating

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  • Food & Drink: 8
  • Service: 6
  • Atmosphere: 9
  • Value: 9

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    Eat With Steph :: Criterion | Eat With Steph

    Prestige and reputation sure does get repeatedly mentioned in my posts, but this one is a little different. It’s very hard to find a restaurant like the Criterion, a restaurant so quintessentially English and enriched with so much history there’s even a Wikipedia page for it.

    Breath-taking interior design by architect Thomas Verity in a Grade II* listed building at the heart of Central London makes the Criterion certainly one to visit. I held my mother’s birthday here last year and most recently re-visited the Criterion for Louise’s 21st, and also, for the new breakfast menu...
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