From Elephant and Castle to Chiswick

Saturday, September 16th , 2023

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Kachori is a smartly decorated new restaurant in Elephant and Castle, opposite a little park and amongst sets of recently built blocks of smart flats – the area has certainly changed in recent years. The meal we ate was a little erratic, with a couple of genuinely excellent dishes but also some overcooked prawns, which was a pity. Despite some ups and downs this was still clearly a restaurant with some talent in the kitchen.

I also tried a couple of restaurants that are local to me. High Road Brasserie is a wildly successful all-day restaurant in Chiswick, part of the Soho House group. It serves crowd-pleasing dishes in pleasant surroundings at prices that are just a bit too high for what appears. This doesn’t seem to trouble the locals one bit, as the place is full day and night. Another Chiswick institution is Annapurna, open since 1970 an old-fashioned neighbourhood Indian restaurant. In truth the food is pretty ordinary, but the service is pleasant and if nothing else it serves as a reminder of just how much Indian food in London has changed in the last couple of decades.

I was sorry to hear of the death of Nico Ladenis at the age of 89. A self-taught chef who earned three Michelin stars, Nico was a larger than life character and a gifted cook. His cookbook "My gastronomy" is a classic, and one that I have cooked many dishes from. I had many superb meals at his restaurants, including Nico at 90 on Park Lane, which was maybe the first fine dining restaurant in London to introduce the idea of a tasting menu. Rest in peace Nico.