We can't get enough of pasta and the new Kitchen Italia in Covent Garden is a welcome newcomer. Tables are communal, the place buzzes, pastas are innovative, prices are reasonable, and each table has its own basil plant, Parmesan grater and olive oil selection. And there's a good pre- and post-theatre meal at £9.95 for any main course pasta, drink or wine. Mon.-Sat. 11am-11.30pm, Sun. 11am-10.30pm. Kitchen Italia, 41 Earlham St., London WC2, 020 7632 9500.
Mark Hix has become a name to reckon with on the London restaurant scene. This March he opens his third restaurant in the capital when Hix Restaurant & Champagne Bar takes over The Gallery in Selfridges on Oxford Street. Expect top British cooking among the posh frocks. Mon.-Sat. 9.30am-8pm (to 9pm Thurs.), Sun. noon-6pm. Hix Restaurant & Champagne Bar, Selfridges, 400 Oxford St., London W1, 0800 123 400.
You can't get enough of Champagne, at least that seems to be the thinking in London. Now, Waterstone's bookshop has added the 5th View Champagne & Seafood Bar to its fifth floor restaurant, pushing the books downstairs (well, there are another four floors of reading matter). Champagne cocktails come in at a fairly reasonable £8.95, there are seafood platters and steaks, and a view over Piccadilly. Mon.-Sat. 10am-9pm, Sun noon-5.30pm. 5th View Champagne & Seafood Bar, Waterstone's, 203-206 Piccadilly, London SW1, 020-7851 2400.
It says something for the current interest in healthy living when a chef like Aldo Zilli, famous for his terrific fish cooking, goes vegetarian. Zilli Green has opened in his former flagship restaurant, Signor Zilli, in Soho. It's designed to get diners into the right frame of mind with reclaimed wood and natural colours, an apt setting for the likes of beetroot lasagna, smoked mozzarella risotto and marinated seared tofu which comes with miso soup and Asian salad. Mon.-Sat. noon-11.30pm. Zilli Green, 40-41 Dean St., London W1, 020-7734 3924.
Bruno Loubet is one of those chefs who made a great impression when in London, then disappeared off the city's culinary radar---in his case, he went off to Australia. London must be doing something right, as he is back at trendy hotel The Zetter Rooms & Restaurant with his Bistrot Bruno Loubet. The curved restaurant remains the same, though spruced up; the menu has a familiar modern and innovative ring---try onion and cider soup with upside-down cheese soufflé for starters then tuck into a comforting beef daube Provençale with mousseline potatoes. Prices are reasonable for chic Shoreditch. Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner daily, Brunch Sat.-Sun. Bistrot Bruno Loubet, The Zetter Rooms & Restaurant, St John's Square, 86-88 Clerkenwell Rd., London EC1, 020-7324 4455.
Classes at Casa Brindisa
The Brindisa group has quite a reputation for its exciting Spanish produce and dishes, so it's good news to hear that they are running a series of Spanish supper clubs at the South Kensington restaurant, Casa Brindisa. They start with a talk or a demonstration about Spanish ingredients and tastings ranging from cheeses to chorizos. It's followed by a set menu and wines. Dates are April 12 (cheeses); May 10 (vegetables); June 7 (anchovies and seafood); and July 5 (tomatoes, vegetables and rice dishes). Casa Brindisa, 7-9 Exhibition Rd., London SW7, 020 7590 0008.
Films, Famous Names & Food in Whiteleys Shopping Centre
Total entertainment is on offer at chef-owner Rowley Leigh's Le Café Anglais, Bayswater, on certain Tuesdays. Cine Anglais offers drinks and canapés at Le Café Anglais, followed by a screening at the Odeon Whiteleys and a discussion on stage with the film's stars (February's was Colin Firth). Then it's back to the restaurant at 9.30pm for a main course, dessert and wine. All for £50 per person. Coming up on March 9 is Running Late. For information and booking call Nicky Lunskey on 020-7221 1415 or email email@example.com. Le Café Anglais, Whiteleys, 8 Porchester Gardens, London W2, 020-7221 1415.
Masterclasses, Indian-StyleChef Shuffle
If you've tried the crab dishes at Indian restaurant Trishna, you've tasted some of the best. Now the restaurant is offering Crab Master Classes every Sunday. Executive chef Ravi Deulkar will show you the secrets of cooking live Dorset crabs with Indian spicing, and in the style of the southwest coast of India. Then it's a 3-course crab tasting menu with matching wines in the private dining room. Book early as numbers are limited. £60 per person. Book by telephone or on firstname.lastname@example.org. Trishna, 15-17 Blandford St., London W1, 020-7935 5624.
Check back soon for more news.
Check back soon for more news.
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