We love new restaurants at Bon Vivant. We love to hear about new ideas, see them grow and be inside before the dust settles. But more and more recently I have been thinking that our lives are dominated by the new, the shiny and the one-off.
What about the old (or not so old) favourites? What about those places that have been good enough to keep the regulars coming back year after year? Perhaps they’re the ones to really cherish.
With that in mind, here we feature a sample of the restaurants celebrating the 10 year milestone this year – achievement, indeed.
Latium Restaurant, Fitzrovia
I was introduced to Latium by a friend many years ago, who said it was her favourite Italian restaurant in London. On a recent return visit, I was reminded of chef Maurizio Morelli’s excellent Italian cooking, which has a focus on the region of Lazio, where he was born.
One of Latium’s strengths is its subtlety – the muted design and discreet location in Fitzrovia make it an ideal place for a quiet, but fun, dinner with friends or as an important business meeting venue. It also helps that the pasta dishes are some of the best in London.
The Garrison, London Bridge
Bermondsey Street has changed almost beyond recognition over the last decade when The Garrison opened its doors.
Having remained as one of London’s best gastropubs, The Garrison was the first venture for Clive Watson and Adam White who went on to open Village East (also on Bermondsey Street) and the Riding House Café in Fitzrovia.
Atul Kochar opened Indian restaurant Benares on Berkeley Square in Mayfair in 2003, gaining a Michelin Star in 2007.
His cooking is very much modern Indian, combining British produce with delicate Indian spicing. Visit their bar to try the signature passion fruit martini.
The Grand Café at The Royal Exchange
On the ground floor of the grand Royal Exchange building in the City, the Grand Cafe offers all-day dining for the City crowd or those in between shopping at the high-end boutiques.
While a full menu is available, a favourite is the lobster sandwich washed down with a glass of champagne.
Renaissance is a group of pubs in South London that was started by South Londoners Tom Peake, Mark Reynolds and Nick Fox, who opened The Abbeville in Clapham in 2003. Five more pubs have since followed including The Avalon and The Tommyfield – click here for a full list.
Morgan M, Clerkenwell
Morgan Meunier opened his French restaurant in Islington in 2003, but relocated to Smithfield Market in 2012. Morgan M offers fine, modern French cuisine and has built up a following in London for his creativity and consistency.
The London restaurant scene can be a tough place to compete, especially with so many new openings and pop-ups grabbing our attention. Here’s to many more good restaurants reaching the 10 year milestone.