Spice Market, located in the slick W hotel, is the London outpost of the original restaurant in New York’s Meatpacking District. Executive chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten, a past master of the pan-Asian fusion genre, has a deep-rooted respect for the cuisines of Asia, yet something seems to have got lost in translation here. The sleek surrounds, all dark wood and low lighting, properly evoke a sense of eastern calm, but the atmosphere is assailed by a rather cheesy soundtrack. The menu, a curated list of ‘street food’ dishes from the culinary hotspots of Asia, comprises everything from sashimi to samosas and curries of various sorts. Our waitress warned with raised eyebrow that the Thai-style slaw with Asian pear was ‘very spicy’, but the pile of sliced cabbage and carrot was meekly flavoured – and not worth the £8 price tag. Better were an imaginative vegetarian dish of mushroom egg rolls with galangal emulsion, and hot, crisp (if not excitingly spiced) tempura salt and pepper sole with Thai basil and lime sauce. Spice Market passes muster as a central London meeting place for a decent (but pricey) glass of wine and a nibble, but don’t come expecting culinary nirvana.
|Venue name:||Spice Market||Contact:|
10 Wardour Street
|Opening hours:||Breakfast served 7-11am Mon-Fri; 8-11.30am Sat, Sun. Lunch served noon-2.45pm, dinner served 5-10.45pm daily|
|Transport:||Tube: Leicester Square tube|
|Price:||Main courses £26-£40. Set lunch £15-£20. Set dinner £48 tasting menu|
Average User Rating
2 / 5
- 5 star:1
- 4 star:1
- 3 star:1
- 2 star:1
- 1 star:6
We went there on a Monday night, so it wasn't very busy. I found the bar and restaurant very well furnished. The atmosphere is really close to the one you can find in Thailand. I was pleasantly surprised by the food. Never ate an asian food so tasty and well done. We had 3 starters and 3 main course in 4 and we shared everything. The portions don't look very big but at the end we couldn't finish everything. The desserts are amazing! Excellent wine and very good service. Quite expensive, but it worth it!! I will certainly go back there at some point.
I had read some really bad reviews of the Spice Market so had quite low expectations when I went there for lunch last weekend (as part of the London Restaurant Festival - £10 for a 2 course meal) however I was pleasantly surprised. The food was quite lovely, though I would have been disappointed if I'd paid full price for it I'm sure, as it's usually quite expensive. £10 (plus service) for what we got seemed like a fair price. The chicken samosas with coriander sauce were delicious and the mango salad was really nice (though quite basic). The cod with Malaysian sauce was a bit disappointing - the sauce was great but the cod had clearly been stored frozen and was quite brittle and dry. At it's menu price you would definitely expect the fish to be fresh. Service was excellent - we were served quickly, the waiter gave us recommendations when asked and our water and drinks were continually topped up without having to ask. We were also served complimentary pompadoms at the beginning of the meal and were given free bags of delicious cookies (though this did seem a strange choice for a pan-Asian restaurant) at the end of our meal. As well as this, the setting is beautiful - I loved the copper lamps lining the ceiling and the shelves full of spices. As it's quite dark inside it's definitely more of a dinner time restaurant however. Overall I'd probably give it a 7/10, and would recommend going there if you can get a set menu deal of some kind, otherwise I do agree that the quality of the food probably does not justify paying such high prices.
What an amazing restaurant. I couldn’t disagree more with the reviews posted here. We have been at least 6 times with various friends on various occasions and were never disappointed. The service was very friendly and attentive, the cocktails are amazing and the food is outstanding. Our favourites are the Tuna Tartare, the Rib Eye steak, the Ginger fried rice and the Thai Jewels - all outstanding. We had absolutely no problems going up to the W Hotel Wyld Bar afterwards as you can get in straight from the restaurant, without having to queue outside and getting past the doorman.
Avoid. really expensive but just didn't deliver on service or quality of food my dining partner was served raw chicken as a starter and was sick for a week after eating here the waiters just shrugged when shown that the neat was cold and raw and I have still received no response to the email that I sent over a week ago. so many better aces to eat than this needless to say shan't be going again
Food is great…..however timing of food is terrible and service is a bit hit and miss. On 2 (out of 4) occasions my partner and I had to wait half an hour or more to be seated after our reservation time. After asking several times it seems we were forgotten about while sitting at the bar. Our table was open and ready but no-one let us know. On our most recent visit we specifically asked them to let us know when our table was ready, but unfortunately we still had to stop a waiter to find out about our reservation. I would not go there if you have to be elsewhere after. We have almost missed a midnight comedy show due to the late seating of a 9:30 reservation and late timing of our mains. When our food arrived we had to wait 20 minutes or more for our second main to arrive, resulting in my partner eating without me or cold curry! On the other 2 occasions side dishes have been so late that the table had finished their mains or the sides just didn’t arrive. There doesn’t seem to be an understanding of a great dining experience which is a real shame. I like the atmosphere at Spice market and the drinks are great, however I am really struggling to think about going back for food. I am sure many people have no problems but we have yet to experience that after 4 visits…
One Star for the wine...... Unfortunately a Friday night without much in the way of food, due to both of our (different) main courses being abandoned after one mouthful. Starters were average in the extreme (squid was greasy, Vietnamese spring roll overly salty) The menu is deceiving in respect of what it doesn't tell you (e.g monkfish / sole are both battered / Ginger fried rice comes with an egg) Both examples a customer should be aware of. As for the mains, the Monkfish came with a 'foam' which was a classic case of trying and failing to be cutting edge. The 'foam' was overflowing from it's dish and looked like it had been sloped on with abandon. The monkfish was largely lost in a batter worthy of a bad fish and chip shop. I went for the rib eye, which was overly charred and inedible due to chef going OTT with the salt (again) Service was fair - poor. Why our waitress advised us at the beginning that the dishes were meant for sharing and that 2 starters / 2 mains would be adequate I don't know. Aside from this, all fairly perfunctuory - Why the service charge remained on a bill where the mains had been removed, I don't know. At the end, the Executive chef was asked down by the Duty Manager. He conceeded all failings and gave us a card to contact him to return. A nice gesture, but given all what occured an invitation not to be taken up. Avoid.
Very disappointing meal. took clients for dinner. Food was incredibly average given the cost. Sauces were sickly and some of the flavours simply did not go. Service was also average. At one point, I was talking to a client and the waitress was hovering by me to the point that I had to stop by conversation - it any other high end restaurant, the waiters are discreet and come back when you are ready - very rude. Will not be going back. Far superior Asian restaurants in London and indeed in the similar area.
A very disappointing experience. We had starters of samosa's and spring rolls which were really nice but then it went downhill after that. We ordered Chargrilled chicken with kumquat and lemongrass dressing and a chicken curry dish. The curry was very bland indeed - basically a coloured coconut milk and the chargrilled chicken extremely spicy, so much so that any flavour of kumquat or lemongrass was completely obliterated. We also ordered the ginger fried rice, which did not arrive, we mentioned to our waiter about 15mins after all our other main courses had arrived that we were still waiting for our fried rice (we had at this stage nearly eaten everything) and he was quite flippant with us, saying that courses arrived when they were ready in the kitchen and he carried on clearing off the table next to us. We finished our meal and it was only then that the manager appeared at our table apologising for our not getting the fried rice, the waiter then came over and and said "Yeah, sorry about that" and just cleared off our table. We were in a rush for a show and my husband doesn't like to make a scene, but it was a bit galling to see the 12.5% service charge added to our bill for such terrible service. Of all the restaurants on offer in London this is not one that I would recommend, nicer (and cheaper) food can be found elsewhere.
I was really disappointed with Spice Market. I went there for my 30th as a surpise treat by my girlfriend as I had commented that the interior / ambience looked amazing. The interior / ambience IS amazing, however, much to my disappointment the food / staff / service does not compliment this. Food: 5 / 10 Presentation: 6 / 10 Service: 5 / 10 I would also advise not taking a table near the cash desk, and 3 /4 members of staff tend to stand around it talking which is really distracting. Also, you should at the start of your meal get a hot towel to wash your hands, something we didn't recieve but the ladies next to us when they sat down did. It's not like it's a cheap venue, they really need to step up to the mark! Very disappointed!
We booked the Spice Market for a Saturday celebratory dinner for some friends who had just gotten married. We were initially a party of 10 so it was difficult getting a reasonable booking time, and had to settle for 9:45pm. The style of Spice Market is the sharing concept, although based on the size of the plates one could go starter/main and be fine from my viewpoint. We had a bit of trouble ordering drinks to begin with, as one of the couples wanted to share Prosecco (on menu), but the waitress hadn't been informed that they didn't have any left (bit surprising). This took a bit of time to be achieve. On the food side, we tried for starters, the Squid, Mango Salad, the Lobster Rolls, the beef skewers, the Mushroom rolls, and the Crab Dumplings. As an overall observation, the food quality in terms of presentation, taste and appeal was average, and given a fairly high price per item, a bit disappointing. The Crab Dumplings and Salad were probably the highlights, with the feature of the starters being one where either the food itself was blander than expected (particularly the Lobster Rolls) or too spiced. The other thing noted is that in the sharing concept, food arrives as prepared so you always get the cold starters first etc. I'm OK with this, but people who aren't sharing and tend to order their own courses, tend to find this approach a bit strange. After the starters we, as instructed by the waitress shared mains, which I think given their bigger size and presentation is tricky. We went for Lobster, Duck Curry, a Chinese style Haddock, Monkfish, and a Salt/Pepper sole. I tried everything and would say that most of the fish, with the exception of the MonkFish was just slightly overcooked (i.e. a bit too firm). This was particularly the case for the Lobster. As with the starters, there was also, with the exception of the Curry (which was good) and the Monkfish (also good, but perhaps too spicy for some), a sense of blandness in the dishes, i.e. balance was not achieved. We didn't stay for dessert, with the bill working out with 1 bottle of Rose Champagne, and 1 bottle of white whine coming to Stg65 per person. One thing to note - when we booked the restaurant, we had been given assurance, on asking that moving from the Restaurant which is adjoined to the W hotel itself so that we could join friends in the lounge and head up to the Wyld Bar, which has a good Saturday night vibe without any problem. Unfortunately this did not prove to be the case at all, and we had a rather heated disagreement with the doorman who was supposed to chaperone us through about this. These types of things tend to happen now and again in the West End when hotels fails to integrate their amenity facilities, but the W tends to better than most in making sure that larger parties (i.e. money spenders) get accommodated properly. This was not the case, and was an added disappointment that further soured the evening.