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steak

Roast at Borough Market

in The Chap Dines by
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Borough Market came to everyone’s attention in the 1990s, when Jamie Oliver pointed out that British food is actually rather good, as long as you spend vast amounts of cash on each ingredient. The market continues to thrive, anachronistically at odds with the vast developments that have taken place around it in Southwark. The change to the market itself is the proliferation of cafes, bars and restaurants in the area immediately surrounding the market, replacing the greasy spoon cafes and sawdust-floor pubs that would have been there originally. A more recent development is the addition of restaurants above the market,…

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The Ivy In The Lanes

in The Chap Dines by
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Keith Waterhouse once described Brighton as ‘a town that looks as if it’s helping the police with its enquiries.’ This barbed, if undeniably once accurate, comment seems somewhat outdated in 2019. Yes, there are still parts of Sodom-by-the-Sea, as it was once dubbed, that have the authentic seediness of the dive about them. However, there are now many more that do credit to any bustling metropolis, thanks to a combination of a lively and well-heeled populace with good taste and the far greater range of places for them to spend their money. Chief amongst these is one of the most…

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Boisdale of Belgravia

in The Chap Dines by
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You cannot miss Boisdale of Belgravia. The strawberry-red frontage stands out like a Highland hunting lodge amid the upmarket estate agents (a set at Albany for £4.3 million, anyone?) and the fly-by-night delicatessens that look like reckless gifts from hedge-fund managers to their trophy wives. En route to our lunch appointment we paused to pay homage to the good old days of Belgravia by admiring the plaque outside Lord Boothby’s house of ill repute on Eaton Square. Once installed at the Macdonald bar under the friendly auspices of a jovial Scottish barman, we were introduced to the modest selection of…

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Sophie’s Soho

in The Chap Dines by
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Sophie’s steakhouse in Chelsea is one of those places that’s called ‘a London institution’, but then so was Bedlam, and nobody would think of going there any more. Yet the comparison is an unfair one. Sophie’s, which first opened in 2002, was ahead of the curve of the apparently never-ending Goodmans and Hawksmoors that came after, and acquired a deserved reputation for excellent steak, top-notch cocktails and a clientele who might occasionally have been known to don pink shirts and red trousers, and perhaps be called things like Hugo and Henrietta. Yet now Sophie Bathgate – the eponymous Sophie –…

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