The Strand Dining Rooms
Set mere paces from Nelson’s Column, you could be forgiven for dismissing The Strand Dining Rooms as fodder for unsuspecting tourists on their way to Trafalgar Square. But put your prejudices aside long enough to slip into the elegant, gentleman’s club-esque interior, and you’ll find a refined crowd of discerning drinkers sipping on expertly made classic cocktails and sparkling flutes of Champagne. Venture further through the low-lit, dark wood bar – toward the shining brass banisters of the staircase leading down into the restaurant – and you’ll find yourself in a sophisticated dining room, staffed by attentive, uniformed waiters.
Since Chef Mark Sargeant took the Strand Dining Rooms under his wing, the menu has undergone something of a makeover. Sargeant’s signature modern British style and love of local ingredients can be seen from starter to dessert, with delights such as soused Cornish mackerel and blue shell Shetland mussels taking their place beside Dedham Vale steaks and whole roast wood pigeon, in season. For dessert, expect refined versions of traditional British puds, from rhubarb crumble with clotted cream to spotted dick with custard. Or you could just tuck into the cheese board – also British, of course.