A traditional British restaurant on the Strand.
Founded in 1828, Simpson’s is a proper London institution. Having had a full spruce-up in 2017, this traditional British restaurant once again has a warm lustre to the oak panelling, fresh paint on the elaborate cornicing and a shimmer to the chandeliers.
Technically part of the neighbouring Savoy Hotel, the vibe here is special occasiony: wedding anniversaries, milestone birthdays. It's the sort of place that the ultra-obliging staff actually come over and offer to take your photo. Oh, and there's a crooning piano player in the corner. Well, of course there is.
As for the cooking, it's pretty solid. The carvery cart (£35, beef or lamb) is the stuff of legend. Moist, full-flavoured slices of lamb came with al dente veg, a puffy yorkshire pud and terrific mint sauce (side note: its horseradish is also great). But the gravy was really a jus and the tatties were a tad tough. Still, the Beef Wellington was good (for £42, you’d want it to be), and a starter of creamy crab salad (£16), with candied morsels of walnuts and apple two ways (thin sticks, blobs of purée), the meal’s star. No teeth? Don’t miss the ‘black forest trifle’.
One final word of advice: go in winter, when the dark, clubby space feels cosy rather than gloomy. And if you're in a four, ask for one of the high-backed booths.
|Venue name:||Simpson's in the Strand||Contact:|
|Transport:||Tube: Embankment or Charing Cross|
|Price:||Dinner for two with drinks and service: around £180.|
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Average User Rating
3.4 / 5
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The most amazing beef ever, service fabulous, ambience traditional elegance. What more could you want
I just cannot justify Simpsons prices for very average half cold food. Most chefs will tell you, it's all about presentation, well I'd rather have a hot meal with a bit of taste. My starter was soup of the day, which was vegetable. I chose this as I'm vegetarian and fancied some nice chunky vegetables. Alas, when it arrived, just a bowl of puréed soup (tepid!) My main course (only veggie one on menu) was asparagus filled with ricotta. Cheese with a selection of beans. Incredibly bland and again, half cold. I didn't complain as my sons were paying for the meal and didn't want to embarrass them. The desert was treacle sponge with custard. I've tasted just as good from M&S! The certainly enjoyed the surroundings, but shame about the food!
The above description of Simpson's is a little unkind and there was no mention of the one thing which Simpson's is most famous for which also explains the layout of the tables. This was one of the grand venues for playing the game of Chess in London and you will see evidence of this as you enter. I have visited Simpson's for dinner twice and had drinks in the bar upstairs while waiting for my table, as it does get quite busy. Traditions are preserved at Simpson's and this makes it unique.