With the weather finally behaving here is a quick round up of some top places to enjoy the sunshine and eat well in the process.
On The Roof With Q (pictured top)
The latest offering from Des McDonald is a pop-up on the roof of Selfridges. With great views over London (only if you are standing up, mind), Astroturf under foot and a retractable roof so the British Summer is taken into account this place offers a great summer option slap bang on Oxford Street. With a focus on ‘raw, grill and smoke’ they offer a good selection of very summery dishes from a seabass cerviche to peppered tuna with wasabi avocado on the starters and inka grilled tiger prawns with smoked fregola and pit grilled ribs on the mains. Food was nicely presented, tasty and interesting. A good spot to break for lunch during a day of shopping.
Set opposite the Almeida Theatre just off the very busy Upper Street in Islington, the majority of this neighbourhood restaurant is, admittedly, inside. However, they have a few tables outside and they are very much worth getting. The set lunch menu and the pre/post theatre menu are excellent value for money coming in at two courses for £17 and three for £20.
The cooking is clean and well executed, with innovative dishes including snails with parmesan gnocchi and wild garlic and a slow cooked lamb raviolo with golden raisins, orange and beautiful Middle Eastern flavourings. If you’re looking to escape the hellishly busy Camden Passage and a beer garden isn’t what you’re looking for, this is a really great option.
Looking out over London Fields, COPPA is the southern Italian sister to Lardo. It is set up with colourful deckchairs and stripy summer awnings and guests can enjoy cocktails and ice-cold summer drinks while eating signature charcuterie made from the rare breed Mangalitsa pig, along with a selection of antipasti such as fennel and orange salad, panzanella, insalata Genovese and patatine fritte. A barbeque will also be set up serving grilled free range chicken giving this little rooftop in Hackney a gloriously Italian feel.
The bar at SushiSamba is one of the best places to be on a sunny summer evening, with amazing views over the city and a gloriously illuminated tree in the middle of the bar. Now, add to that the fact that they are launching a sushi and saki masterclass and things get even better. The class takes you through the basics of saki and sushi making while you nibble on classic dishes from the menu before you try a spot of sushi making for yourself.
They even cut and present your attempts in a way that makes them look incredibly professional, even if your attempt looks more like a giant cheesy wotsit than the delicate salmon roll coated in tempura flakes it was intended to be. The next class is on 30 June 30 costs £125 per person. And if that isn’t for you, they are running a shed load of World Cup related events too – so you can enjoy Brazil from Heron Tower.