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This cross-Channel outpost of Parisian celebrity haunt Ferdi has brought a whole new level of anxiety to securing a table in London. Reservations can only be made via text, and your table may disappear in the course of your messaging. If you manage to get through the door, you’ll find a tiny wood-panelled dining room in Shepherd Market, with soft toys arranged around the ceiling and paper-topped tables packed so closely they require shifting when your neighbour needs to use the loo. The menu is reproduced in English, French and Spanish and it repays to be trilingual: there is no chilli con carne on the English list, but there is on the French. The famous ‘Mac Ferdi’ cheeseburger is far and away the best thing to eat. The repertoire is otherwise fairly hotchpotch (Greek salad, nachos, meatballs and mash). Breaded prawns had sweet meat but the appearance of a supermarket canapé; macaroni cheese came with a huge ruff of shaved ham encircling the bowl (instead of mingled in the pasta); and Belgian waffles with whipped cream tasted shop-bought. To be fair, Ferdi has arrived without generating any of its own PR fanfare, the tables of mostly French diners were having a whale of a time, and the French staff could not have been lovelier. But on the basis of the food, it’s not hard to see why London has stolen Paris’s crown as the best place to eat in Europe.
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