I've been to The Ritz many times over the years, mainly to The Ritz Club, however, which is an opulent and outrageously beautiful private members club in the basement of The Ritz Hotel.
I have fond memories of drinking champagne in the bar there, listening to the Thursday night jazz music, and one time in particular when I was 20 and there with a group of friends (I actually blogged about it briefly here); I was sat in the middle of two men, one of them I was dating, and the other I had dated in the past...needless to say they didn't see eye to eye and while everyone sat there awkwardly doing the wide-eyed 'shit, what do we do?' eyes at me, I sat there gleefully with a grin on my face relishing the moment. I can be a bit of a bitch like that sometimes. #sorrynotsorry
Anyway, last night I finally tested out The Ritz Restaurant upstairs in the hotel. It was as beautiful as the club, with gold everywhere and artwork that makes you swoon. Every part of The Ritz makes you feel as though you've gone back a hundred years, if it wasn't for the way people were dressed and the cameras and phones everywhere, you could easily have believed you were in an era where the monarch was a King and the party in power were the Liberals.
You may remember Alex from lots of blog posts in 2014/2013/2012, however he was missing from any in 2015. I haven't seen him in almost a year (February 2015 to be exact), as he went up north and had a baby. As you do. He's now back in London (and promised me he'll arrange a 'viewing' with his adorable boy child soon), so we were well overdue a huge catch up on life! We had a look on Bookatable at their Star Deals to decide where to go, and The Ritz had a £55pp deal with three courses plus a glass of champagne each, so we thought we'd treat ourselves!
After meeting at our club, ROSL, for a drink first,we wandered up the road to The Ritz on Piccadilly. We walked through the hotel to the restaurant, and were quickly shown to our table. Now, the lighting in The Ritz is very dark and orange/yellow, so the white balance was impossible to get right, so apologies in advance for the yellow-y photos!
I'm a terrible blogger and didn't photograph Alex's champagne - sorry! I did however, photograph my much prettier non-alcoholic cocktail, which was absolutely delicious.
While we chatted away and sipped on our drinks the little amuse bouche's arrived. They were OK, but nothing too special.
Soon our starters appeared, and we tucked in. Alex had chosen the Oxtail Ravioli, whilst I opted for the Marinated Tuna. Alex loved his ravioli, and I have to say I got major food envy when it arrived. My tuna was tasty, but a didn't have the 'wow' factor.
I was hoping the mains would fare a little better, but once again I was disappointed. Maybe I chose the wrong thing, as at the last minute I changed my mind from the Halibut to the Chicken, but it lacked flavour, was very bland, and just felt like a bit of plain chicken with a little bit of sauce and a few veggies on the side...which was essentially what it was.
Once again Alex chose the best dish, and was very happy with his deliciously tender and perfectly pink lamb.
We had a short break inbetween our mains and desserts, and the pianist had stopped tinkling on the ivories and in his place a band and singer were now in position. We listened to the music while we waited, and Alex showed me the adorable photos of his new baby boy, Zac!
When my dessert arrived thankfully I immediately knew I'd chosen the right dessert; I'd opted for the Banana Souffle with Rum Ice-Cream. It was absolutely delicious and I absolutely loved it! Just look at that Souffle top!
Alex decided to test my allergies and ordered the cheese platter...which arrived on a huge trolley so he could choose which cheeses he wanted. He was pretty impressed with this and was in cheese-lover-heaven!
Overall I was disappointed with the food, however the surroundings were incredible and I guess it's all about the experience. I don't think I'd go back again to be honest, there are just so many other restaurants in London that have far better food (although I don't think any others can't compete with the interior of The Ritz).
Have you ever dined at The Ritz? What did you think?
*We dined as guests of Bookatable, however as always views are my own.