This is a popular restaurant serving great South Indian food. It's always busy and you'll probably have to queue to share a table, but its worth it. It was the place to be and be seen last year, and the owner of the hotel I stayed at who is always on a mission to find the best new place to eat took me there. He thought it was so good he made me promise not to send a review in to the Lonely Panet. It's been nearly a year and the 'it' crowd has probably moved on, so I think it's now safe to spread the word. Go for the masala dosai and if you are missing the fantastic South Indian coffee, decoction, they have it here!
46 Janpath, New Delhi 110 001
Tel: 011 2331 7755
After years of experimenting all over town with other Asian restaurants, this is the restaurant our 'swimming club' has settled on. Fusion may be pushing it slightly (trendy lilac and silver interior) but the food is vastly more modern than most Asian restaurants and we have had puy lentils as dhal. Superb. Fish tikka with chilli sauce like a salsa and the kahari bindi gost (lamb and okra) are a couple of favourites. Excellent vegetarian dishes. The portions are huge and often there is an extra dish to try. No lurid colours, plenty of spice and garlic. The owner has said he would like to do proper Pakistani food and we would like to see a specials board.
489-491 Barlow Moor Road, Chorlton, M21
Tel: 0161 881 7200
Classiest décor? Reputation? Food? For the Chinese, it is only the food that counts, with a serious nod to value for money. A recent meal at the Kwok Man showcased cooking of rare quality in decor that was the opposite. Eating off the handwritten Cantonese menu, a dish of steamed minced pork with salted fish was sublime. We also ordered earthy deep fried pigs intestine stuffed with minced prawn meat and dau mui (tender mange tout leaves) stir fried with crushed garlic. Both were very fine indeed. Good Chinese food, real Chinese food - a class act in Manchester.
28 Princess Street, Chinatown
Telephone: 0161 228 2620
Whether you’re after wild boar sausages (with sauerkraut, tomatoes and onion to dollop into the bap), fishfinger sandwiches (slabs of prime, fresh cod in breadcrumbs) or soup of the day ('Help yourself to bread'), this cafe offers a simple but mouthwatering selection of fare bought fresh from Borough Market. The open frontage allows the diner to watch the market hustle and bustle, while the patio heaters inside keep the elements at bay. The cosy setting of mixed chairs, shared tables and a sideboard of jams, pickles and bread throws the customer into a farmhouse kitchen. And they sell bread.
Borough Market, 8 Stoney Street, SE1
Rani serves the most wonderful Gujarati vegetarian cuisine and prides itself on making all the items on the menu. The owner is invariably on hand to welcome you into the warm and friendly environment. Waiting staff are knowledgeable, attentive and, if needed, will help you work your way to making the difficult decision as to what to choose from such an extensive, well-priced menu. If this is too difficult, they have a yummy range of set menus, or go on Sunday when it is buffet lunch. They are child-friendly, too!
7 Long Lane, Finchley Central
Tel: 020 8349 4386/2636
One of the best-kept secrets in north London, the Raj Villa specialises in fish dishes as well as providing outstanding examples of the usual fare at affordable prices. You must try the Goan fish masala - fresh sea bass simmered in tomato, turmeric and lemon grass. And if you like it hot, then it has to be the fish Bengal – with plenty of fresh chillies. Service is superb with just the right attention to your needs – none of that awful fawning that seems de rigueur in some places. And if you are lucky the owner might let you touch his football signed by the Arsenal team: enough recommendation in itself for one part of north London.
148 Colney Hatch Lane, Muswell Hill; 020 8815 0707
It's one of my favourite places in Adelaide. Great market real mix of food, smells, cultures etc.
All the food you could ever want. For eating try breakfast at Lucia's if you can get a seat - best breakfast in Adelaide (try the poached eggs) and the coffee's pretty outstanding too. On a Friday night the market is open late and you could try out the Asian food court where you can get dinner for under 7 dollars.
Head to Gouger Street for more upmarket (tho still impossibly good value) restaurants - Chinese, Thai, Vietnamese, Malaysian, Greek, Italian even fish and chips...
A large open-air space in Humaitá - between Rua Voluntarios and Rua Humaitá (which is the continuation of R. São Clemente). At night hundreds of cariocas are out eating, drinking, and being social at the four restaurants which serve the outdoor tables - Pizza Park, Galeto Mania (specializes in chicken), Espirito do Chopp (a varied menu including an excellent picanha na pedra, as well as crepes), and Manekineko (sushi). With a view of the illuminated statue of Cristo Redentor immediately overhead.
Between Rua Voluntarios and Rua Humaitá - frequent bus service.
Two museums, right next door to each other, and a great way to occupy all of the family.
The Natural History Museum is wonderful before you enter it, a beautiful example of Victorian extravagance. Plenty to see and do, especially the dinosaurs; be warned though, the animatronic T Rex is very real and great for scaring small children! There's a decent little coffee shop, although it was a bit disturbing eating chocolate cake sat next to Chi Chi the Panda!
The Science Museum is more modern, although the exhibits go back some way. All kids will love the 'Launchpad' area in the basement, all hands on, noisy, messy and great fun. The Deep Blue Cafe does a decent lunch as well.
Both museums have regular exhibitions as well, although these will have an entry charge; usually well worth it though. There is also an Imax Cinema in the Science Museum, any of the underwater or outer space movies are good value.
Take it from a local and a curryphile, the curry mile has gone way downhill in recent years. I'm not naming any names (Shere Khan, Shezan, Royal Naz) or divulging their sins (poor service, reports of infestations, hygiene issues, meat and fish not being what it says on the tin, sauces that have come straight from a tin), suffice to say that the restaurants on the curry mile have been living off their reputations for a while now, and while that might do for undiscerning students, drunks and one-off visitors who won't come back anyway, if you want a decent curry head down to Burton Road in West Didsbury.
Two of the best are the "Great Kathmandu" and the "Gurkha Grill", or if you are feeling adventurous and fancy a curry lunch, seek out "This 'n' That" on Soap Street in the city centre, their rice and three is a local institution and probably the best food you'll find in the UK for around the 3 quid mark.
Massive selection of Belgian beer in bottles and on tap. The food here is excellent, restaurant quality but in a pub, a 'proper' pub at that. This is NOT a bar. Oh, and it has bands/musicians!
105 Southover Street, Brighton
The Spaghetti Factory is a quirky restaurant that is excellent value for money - a loaf of freshly baked sour dough bread, free refill soft drinks, starter, ice cream and tea and coffee, are included with the price of your main course. Fantastic for feeding a whole family!
The restaurant itself is a treasure trove of Tiffany glass panels and lights, mismatched furniture means you may be seated on a grand wooden throne or inside a reclaimed streetcar, and should you glance up check out the many artefacts and trinkets that adds to the family atmosphere.
#54 The Esplanade
Parking available; Meter & pay parking
Has been tucked away in the Northern Quarter for years now and is still by far the best in Manchester. Small but well considered menu, great wine list and puddings to die for. Last time I was there Ainsley Harriot was at the next table (only down point).
Off High Street. Behind Market buildings.
The Seven Stories is an ongoing project that preserves original manuscripts and artwork from renowned childrens' authors such as Allan and Janet Alberg, JK Rowling, Tony Ross, Michael Bond. This is a fun, interactive environment for children and adults that subtley encourages reading and learning through play.
Also there are regular events where authors and illustrators will visit, give a reading of their work and sign books for visitors too. The ground floor is also host to an excellent bookstore dedicated to the very best in children's literature.
Workshops are regularly available throughout the summer and the cafe is well worth a visit for a quick refuelling and a nice view of the river! Or if a big lunch is required pop along to the Cluny, where they do a mean handmade beef burger, with handcut chips and salad.
See www.sevenstories.org.uk for information about events, and detailed directions.
Seven Stories 30 Lime Street, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 2PQ.
Close to Byker Metro Station, but if you are feeling energetic take a good walk along the Quayside or get off at the very last stop on the Q2 bus (Runs Haymarket-Quayside) and ask your driver for further directions.
Chic and sophisticated bar that serves great Italian style snacks and the most delectable cocktails made from the best spirits, liqueurs, fresh fruit, herbs and juices. My favourite is a Basil Grande, a beautiful strawberry Martini with fresh basil and cracked black pepper. Excellent friendly staff, happy to advise on your choice of tipple and even happy to make cocktails off menu.
See www.paradiso.co.uk/index.htm for further information and to check out the sister establishments - Paradiso also comes highly recommended for their fantastic light lunches, made with locally sourced ingredients.
82-84 Pilgrim Street,
Newcastle upon Tyne,
Tel: 0191 232 8923
Nearest Metro Station, Monument. Start from the bottom of Northumberland Street, head past the Tyneside Cinema, and the Fire Station.
Nice quirky but chilled out pub, in an area usually dominated by student dives punting cheap vodka. Good music, regular DJ and poetry reading nights, good beer and the nicest food - the panninis are brilliant and portions are gigantic!
2a, Landcross Rd, Fallowfield, Manchester, Lancashire M14 6NA
Tel: 0161 224 0467
It is on a small side street just off Wilmslow Road beside the Cheshire Cat.
As an Aussie who lived in Manchester for 5 years, the only answer to the prepackaged lunch ordeal had to be, Shlurp!
Tucked away on Brazennose Street, opposite the town hall, Shlurp offers wonderful homemade soups, tasty salads and wonderful wraps - all made on the premises daily. It also serves the best coffee in Manchester - coming from a Melbourne-born coffee snob, that title is not lightly bestowed!
Lucy, who owns and runs Shlurp is passionate about food and people - what a combination!
The food is affordable and fresh, give Shlurp a go and say hi to Lucy from Claudine!
Unit 2, Brazennose House
East Brazennose Street
Manchester, M2 5BP
Maybe I'm missing it on the guide to Manchester, but I can't find it! Is it because everyone thinks it's so good that it doesn't need a rec? A few years ago, the then Times food writer (Mathew Norman?) described The Yang Sing as one of the best restaurants in Britain; no, not one of the best Chinese restaurants, but one of the very best.
Unless that's changed dramatically (I've been out of the UK for a couple of years), I entirely agree. Terrific dim sum, a huge choice for dinner, and they also are a marvellous place for Chinese New Year, but also Christmas. And also very helpful staff.
I love some of the restaurants near Leicester Square, but The Yang Sing, for me, is probably the best Chinese restaurant in Europe, if not the best outside Hong Kong.
34 Princess Street, Manchester M1 4JY
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