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Hot Dinners

Little Social

5 Pollen Street, Mayfair, London W1S 1ND
Latest critic review: July 07, 2013
Critics' score: 7.5 out of 10 Users' score: 10.0 out of 10

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This is Jason Atherton's affordable French bistro, only just across the road from his flagship Pollen Street Social. Expect seasonal French bistro dishes with rotating specials and cocktails.

Hot Dinners Test Drive

Hot Dinners has had a test drive of this restaurant. Find out what we thought.


AA Gill Sunday Times
Reviewed on July 07, 2013
" Little Social is nicer than its food. The atmosphere is reminiscent of the old ideal of living an intellectual and soignée European life in public. The grub is a mismatch of stuff that is too expensive, but it’s not the victuals that are important, it’s this idea, this feeling that’s been nicely recreated with a little panache." READ REVIEW
Critic's score: 7
Grace Dent Evening Standard
Reviewed on May 10, 2013
"Little Social is perfectly lovely, the service is wholly attentive and brimming with smiles, bells and whistles, yet, for me it’s not as adorable as the larger, joyous Balthazar or as elegant as The Delaunay. But it still has a plethora of charm, and finesse more than Brasserie Zedel, which I wouldn’t point anyone to at the moment." READ REVIEW
Critic's score: 6
Emma Sturgess Metro
Reviewed by April 11, 2013
"Like the beef, some traditionally simple dishes are left alone. Others, including a lovely goat’s milk rice pudding are needlessly over-poshed. The mixed messages are confusing: the day they pick one and stick to it will be a relief all round." READ REVIEW
Critic's score: 6
John Walsh Independent
Reviewed on April 06, 2013
"It's not every day you can give a restaurant five stars for design and atmosphere, but Little Social's intimate room is irresistible. The food nearly gets five stars for invention, polish and presentation; and the sausage-and-beefburger heartiness that robs it of top billing is, paradoxically, one of its great attractions." READ REVIEW
Critic's score: 8.5
Fay Maschler Evening Standard
Reviewed on March 27, 2013
"Slow-cooked egg, mushrooms and croutons recline in a bowl and at the table are covered in a cashmere pouring of Parmesan and squash soup — extraordinarily cosseting." READ REVIEW
Critic's score: 8
Guy Dimond Time Out
Reviewed on March 27, 2013
"The French staff were charming, the atmosphere intimate, the cooking first-rate, the wines by the glass desirable – and, with set lunches at £25.50 for three courses, a meal here needn’t be rapaciously priced. The bistro is back with a bang." READ REVIEW
Critic's score: 8

User reviews

1 reviews

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10.0  (1)
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The best of the wave of new French style in London

Maybe hold off on Balthazar (the food, somewhat disappointingly, isn't - yet anyway - the reason to go). Definitely go to Chavot - up there with the best. But take whatever booking you can get at Little Social (and it may be a while, this restaurant is petit).

Service is from a mostly French team, charmant, professional, just all-round lovely.

Roasted halibut 'BLT' was translucent and silky and the accompanying 'bacon' lettuce and tomato clever without being cutesy. Braised ox cheeks fell apart on contact with the fork (no knife required for this) and the stock-rich glossy sauce (poured on a la table, from a silver jug) was unctuous. A miniature spoon is speared in the top of the bone marrow to dig it out with.

Desserts of Apple and blackberry crumble, served from a copper pan, also a la table) and a paragon of chocolate moelleux, in a cup, with a boulette of sea salt and almond ice cream (to be tipped in to the melted pool of warm rich moelleux) were outstanding.

Reasonably priced for this quality. Top end food in a room which echos olden-France, but oh so au courant.

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Address5 Pollen Street, Mayfair, London W1S 1ND
trainOxford Circus
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