There’s something of a heavenly aura to the dining room at this Crouch End newcomer. With unadorned white walls, white tablecloths and lampshades, a long white banquette along one wall and a mirror covering another, you almost expect an angel, rather than a waitress, to appear at your side to take your order. The dining room is at the rear of the venue (it was formerly Florians); at the front is a bar. Its first incarnation was in stark contrast to the restaurant, all black marble, mirrors and blue neon lighting, but it will have transformed into a more soothing space by the time this guide is published, serving breakfast and brunch as well as booze. The food menu won’t change, however: a mix of British, French, Mediterranean and oriental dishes, offered à la carte and as a fixed price ‘market menu’. The latter is a bargain, with generous portions and an ambitious, creative approach to the food – that doesn’t always pay off. A starter of grilled halloumi with strawberries, parma ham and leaves was, frankly, odd; simpler, and much better, was a dish of crispy-coated, soft-centred whitebait. To follow, seared calf’s liver atop a crusty potato cake married well with green beans flecked with bacon bits. ‘Chilli tempura cod’ featured nuggets of lovely, flaky fish, but the batter wasn’t notably tempura-like, and there was no hint of the promised chilli. The brief wine list is approachable, and service deft and friendly.
|Venue name:||St James||Contact:|
4 Topsfield Parade
|Cross street:||Middle Lane|
|Opening hours:||Meals served noon-11pm Mon-Wed; noon-1am Thur-Sat; noon-10.30pm.|
|Transport:||Tube: Crouch Hill rail then bus W7|
|Price:||Main courses £12.95-£19.95. Set lunch £4.95 1 course. Set dinner £12 2 courses.|
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Average User Rating
3.5 / 5
- 5 star:2
- 4 star:0
- 3 star:1
- 2 star:0
- 1 star:1
Fantastic restaurant, Head Chef Roger knows his cuisine and mixes up eastern spices and flavours with the boldness of western dishes. Would recommend if you're near the area.
This is a strong contender for worst restaurant in North London. I've just been charged £70 for corked wine, stale bread, undressed salad, cold chips, no soap in toilets... you could forgive any one of these things, but cumulatively they add up to a really depressing waste of money and time. The reality gap between the pretension of the menu and its execution is really sad. You may as well set fire to your money than spend it here - at least you'd get a moment's warmth and satisfaction.