I've been wanting an excuse to go to Bob Bob Ricard for a long time and when my parents got tickets for Terry Wogan and wanted to go somewhere for Sunday lunch afterwards then I knew the time had come.
Located in Soho, the first thing to say is that decor in BBR is a decadent, opulent and over the top. It conjures up images of a fancy dining car on the Orient Express and is a delightful throw back. You instantly feel like you're somewhere special and we received a warm welcome from the staff.
In some ways the whole experience - menu, service, venue - at BBR reminds me of the The Ivy, but done just better on the whole. The menu is nothing too flash or pretentious containing classic British dishes with a Russian influence. I know that doesn't sound too inspiring, but it works.
Before moving on to the food a quick word about the service.
Our server really struggled with my dad's North-East accent and it resulted in us being brought a wrong drinks order and having to repeat things a number of times (which we found quite amusing).
However, I thought the waitress handled it really well - she apologised profusely about the drinks, proclaiming the memorable "It is no problem - here is the customer is king! I will sort it out for you" and then making sure she repeated everything we ordered back to us *very* slowly. She was affable, friendly and attentive - for example, she made sure the water on the table was topped up constantly without asking. A small thing, but it does make a difference and it's amazing how many restaurants fail to do it without asking.
As it was a Sunday three of us went for the roast beef Sunday lunch:
On our last Sunday lunch out together we went to Corrigan's and we all agreed this was better. The roast beef (sourced from O'Shea's) was excellent. Served medium-rare it was full of flavour and melted in the mouth. The huge Yorkshire puddings were light and crisp and the roasted veg and greens all cooked perfectly. Overall I was really impressed and it's got to be one of the best Sunday lunches I've had.
My mum went for the crab cakes and was equally delighted. There was plenty of sweet crab meat in the cake and it went well with the tomoatoes and egg.
I was a little disappointed with my chocolate raspberry trifle as I felt the proportions were wrong. Too much cream on the top and not enough of the delicious chocolate and raspberry at the bottom!
Grace went for a mini-selection of cakes, which she wolfed down in a flash and didn't share with anyone! Her favourites were a rum-baba (minus the rum) and a light Battenberg cake.
Overall, BBR really impressed from start to finish. It's now the place I'd go and recommend to people if they want a high quality, but non-Michelin star style, meal in London. Good stuff.