I think all Londoners have heard about the Wolseley – that’s how fabulous the restaurant is. I absolutely adore the place, for a number of reasons. The personal one is because this is where Christopher took me for dinner on our first date. I must say I wasn’t concentrating completely on the food, but it was the perfect backdrop to our date. The starters I don’t remember, but I think I had the asparagus, but I was too nervous to notice at that stage. The main course I remember however, because I tried to be girly and had the seabass, which was beautifully cooked, but I was at the same time longing for Christopher’s steak frites, as I love my meat. After two courses we were very full and decided to go somewhere else and have cocktails for dessert.
This was the first time I went to the Wolseley, but I (we) have been back since. You often need to plan ahead and book, but we have been lucky a few times and got a table by just walking in. Usually this occurs when we’re shopping around Piccadilly and Jermyn Street and we realise that we’re hungry. Christopher always have the same lighter dish, the steak tartare, he claims the Wolseley’s is the best there is. I have tried both soups and salads and they have been simple yet perfect. We have also had cream tea here, but we are both dying to go here for breakfast. The closest we’ve got to that, is the Eggs Benedict I made last weekend with the book about the restaurant’s breakfasts. It has been a while since we’ve been here for dinner too, but I really want to go soon.
Other reasons why I adore this place, is both the decor, the service and the food. The decor is from the 1920s, very art deco with black, gold and mirrors, but in a very tastefull way. Every detail is wonderful, right down to the silverware and tableware, especially the teastrainers (ohh the teastrainers!). In the 1920s the restaurant was actually a car show room for the Wolseley motor company, but they went bust in 1926 and after that Barclays used the building until 1999. After restoring the interior the current restaurant opened in 2003, and keeps serving a mix of business men, tourists and Londoners everyday.
The service is excellent as well. The staff is always friendly, incredibly efficient and sometimes you hardly even notice they are there, they’re so swift and quick, dancing around the tables like ballerinas.
And then we have the food. The menu is classic french café and fine dining, and it is done to perfection. Even a salad is amazing here, because it is the best produce, and the chefs are perfectionists. The best thing is of course that you can pop in at any time of day and have breakfast, coffee and cake, cream tea, a light bite or a full on three course meal.
Make sure you pop by – everyone should experience this place!