NB: The Ivy is currently closed for refurbishment until 'May 2015'.
– Time Out Eating & Drinking Editors , January 2015
This gorgeous room may not attract as many A-list celebs as it once did, but there was one B-plus (glamorous if faded actress) on a Monday lunchtime. Other customers were a nice mix: business people, affluent couples, tourists and a family or two (one with yelping baby). Our meal, ordered both from the carte and the set menu, started startlingly well. Fish soup was as deeply flavourful as any you’ll find in France, and a lunchtime special – poached egg ‘Arlington’ – sandwiched a perfectly cooked egg between a toast round and divine smoked salmon, with luxuriant hollandaise topping it off. Mains let the show down woefully. Bang-bang chicken was bathed in a gloopy sauce that palled after a few mouthfuls. The set lunch main, herb-roasted salmon with horseradish velouté, featured fish so dry it might have been petrified, and had no perceptible herb taste; the smidgen of sauce was bland. Impeccably attentive, smiling service is a redeeming feature. So is the relative quiet, even when busy. The wine list starts, half-heartedly, at around £25 and features some enthusiastic mark-ups. There’s good food to be had, but choose badly and you won’t creep back to the Ivy in a hurry.