Restaurant Guide Harden's has just published its 25th edition of London restaurants. It's good news for Michel Roux Jr whose Le Gavroche topped the list, knocking off the Ledbury from the top slot of the guide's Top Gastronomic Experience. Also celebrating will be Simon Rogan - Fera entered the same list at no 4 - with his tasting menus declared "wizard" by one Hardens reviewer. <no comment - Ed>
Less happy with the result will be Nuno Mendes - the guide has put Chiltern Firehouse top of their Most Disappointing Cooking list, making it worse than the Oxo Tower. Really? REALLY? Also on that list is Heston Blumenthal's Dinner, Grain Store and Pollen Street Social, so maybe Nuno shouldn't be too unhappy to be in such company.
But the guide's biggest story this year is that this past year has seen the highest ever rate of new restaurant openings in the capital since their first book was published in 1991. The 2016 editionʼs tally of 179 newcomers sounds pretty impressive...until you compare it to Hot Dinners' own New and Recently Opened page. Now we know we miss the odd place or two, but even with that we make it 229 new openings of note since January. We don't have the Harden's list to look at, to compare ours with theirs to see what they missed out, but with almost 50 restaurants difference that's a big discrepancy.