Sunday, 26 September 2010
Why is it not that easy to find good food in London?
We were all set to have dinner today at Asakusa near Mornington & Crescent station as we'd heard lots of good stuff about this place. Got to Camden, went to a pub for a quick strawberry cider, and decided to give the restaurant a call on the off-chance that we'd be able to book a table for dinner in half an hour's time - yes, silly we know. The very nice guy at the other end of the line said told us most nicely that no, we most probably wouldn't get a table if we hadn't booked, and so, we decided to book a table for next Saturday instead. Watch this space for that one.
So, we had to come up with a new place to have dinner at. One of my friends had previously recommended Thai Dream near Holborn station; what better time to try something new? Off we went with 2 other friends (who usually accompany us on these eating adventures) to try out this place which had been recommended as somewhere cheap, with reasonable portions, and was off the beaten track.
Now, you'll probably notice that this isn't one of the usual posts, as there are no pictures, and neither have I mentioned the name of the restaurant as the title of the post.
Why is that, you might ask?
Well, the dinner just left me feeling kinda ... meh. I think the bf and my friends felt the same way too. It's not that the food wasn't good or anything, because of all the things we ordered, the only let-down was the pad thai (which really didn't seem fried in any way) and I certainly couldn't fault the service. Maybe it had to do with the fact that when we walked in, we were the only people in there. Not only was there a hushed silence (from us) when we first went into the restaurant, but the totally empty restaurant with dim lighting and one waiting staff didn't really do much to encourage loud banter.
Like I said, I can't fault the waiter in any way, nor most of the food (except that pad thai) but it sure didn't give us a good start to the meal.
Anyway, all that aside, we paid about £16 per person for what was not that great a meal, and that is why I'm now sitting on my couch (while the bf is watching Match of the Day), feeling like I really can't be bothered processing the pictures from the meal.
The lighting was rubbish, the presentation wasn't all that great (not that I usually care about that) and the taste in my mouth is just one of puzzlement. Which is why there are no pictures here.
Puzzlement because in a city as big, varied and cosmopolitan as London, why is it so difficult to find something good to eat? I don't mean just anything, because there are plenty of anythings around. Everywhere you go there is something to be eaten, if you're not picky.
It just gets more difficult when you're trying to find a restaurant which is the best of its kind. Sure we have our favourites - the ones we go to every Friday when we're just too tired from the week and want to have something tried and tested. We have our favourite Chinese restaurant which never fails to deliver consistent, good quality dishes (Peninsula restaurant in Greenwich), we have our tried and tested restaurants in Chinatown / Soho (TenTenTei, Jade Garden, TPT, Jen Cafe), the ever-increasingly popular Cafe East, Tay Do and Viet Grill for Vietnamese, and of course, Yi Ban for dim sum. These are the ones we like, and the ones we searched long and hard to find.
Thing is, it's been a while since we last found something we really, really like. Something which made me excited just thinking about when I could process the pictures, something which made me begin to blog about it while eating, something which made me want to tell everyone about.
Why is that so? Surely it can't be that difficult to find something good in a city of 8 million people? Someone somewhere who is the best in their country must have decided to set up shop in London to peddle their goods?
OK, enough of the ranting. Maybe I just need to go out and try some more restaurants. Maybe I need to check out more blogs to find inspiration. I've a few restaurants lined up which I want to try, so with some perseverance I might find another restaurant to add to my list of favourites.
Table waited on by monchichi at 06:04