Feb 15, 2012

Wood Stone’s “Great City Tour” Part 2: London

London: Culinary Capital of the World?  Parisians, New Yorkers, Chicagoans, and some Spanish from San Sebastian may argue that title; we’d like to leave it up to your “taste.”  Culinary controversies aside, there’s no doubt the London food scene has arrived.  And Wood Stone is pleased to be a part of many great London restaurants.  With over 600 ovens in the UK, and more than half of those in the greater London area, there are too many places to list them all. But if you have 4 days to explore, here’s a good start!

Day 1

Lunch: Strada.  London is a city to explore on foot and see up close.  Start with Oxford and Regent Streets.  You will quickly know you’re in a special place. Once the sights have seen you, and you’ve lightened the wallet shopping, hunger will ensue.  Strada Cucina Italiana at Market Place, a walking lane just off Regent Street, is a great place to fix that.  Whether seated alfresco or inside next to the wood oven, start with the Rosetta Stone of pizzas: the Margherita. From there dabble daringly; the Rustica and Fiorentina will expand your pizza horizons and fill you up for an afternoon stroll down to St. James’ Park and its dueling paths.  Watch out for the ducks!
Wood Stone Connection: Mt. Adams WS-MS-5-W

Dinner: Pizza East.  One of the best reviewed pizzas in London, their original location in Shoreditch is redefining rustic hip on London’s East Side. Now their Portobello East location is entertaining the West End.  We particularly enjoyed the community table in the bar at Shoreditch where rubbing elbows doesn’t get you in trouble.  The menu is fantastic and features a mix of classic and cutting edge pizzas, but don’t stop there.  Venture past the pizzas and you’ll find the oven-prepared apps are awesome, as are the Wood Oven Entrees.
Wood Stone Connection: 2 each Mt. Baker WS-MS-6-RFG-W (Shoreditch) / 2 each Mt. Chuckanut WS-MS-4-W (East Portobello)

Day 2

Lunch: Zizzi.  With over 100 locations in the UK, you’ll find many opportunities to dine at Zizzi.  We’ve had the pleasure of working with the Zizzi team for over a decade and watch them become a leader in the high street market. But with so many Zizzis to choose from, which one should you visit?   If you’re checking out the shopping along the Strand, or hungry for a nosh after some sightseeing at Trafalger Square, drop in to Zizzi at The Strand.  It’s just up from the Charing Cross Tube station. According to Zizzi, the Diavola is the most “liked” pizza; we’re also big fans of the field mushroom-filled Funghi.
Wood Stone Connection: Mt. Baker WS-MS-6-RFG-W or WS-MS-7-RFG-W

Dinner: La Chapelle. The stunning Michelin starred La Chapelle, by Galvin brothers Chris and Jeff, is located just around the corner from the Liverpool Street station.  Universally recognized for its outstanding food and atmosphere since opening two years ago, it’s been voted London Restaurant of the Year by the Tatler and the AA.  We can’t recommend it highly enough. It’s more than a don’t miss: it’s a must go.  Be sure to tell us your favorite dish!
Wood Stone Connection: Mt. Adams WS-MS-5-RFG

Day 3

Lunch: Prezzo.  Another great high street concept, Prezzo was Pizza and Pasta Magazine’s 2011 Pizzeria of the Year.  With over 100 installations in the UK and many in the London area, you’ll have no problem finding a great location.  We’d suggest you consider lunch at Prezzo Haymarket before a mtinee at the Royal Haymarket Theater.  It’s a great place to wait for Waiting for Gadot!  Can’t make your mind up about which pizza to try?  Consider the Aldo Zilli designed “Aldo’s North and South”; a half meat, half veggie, all wow pizza.   It’s perfect for those who used to be indecisive but aren’t so sure anymore…
Wood Stone Connection: Mt. Baker WS-MS-6-RFG-W or WS-MS-7-RFG-W

Dinner: Barbecoa.  British chef, celebrity and social activist Jamie Oliver is a household name on both sides of the pond.  At Barbecoa, he’s teamed up with American chef and barbecue expert Adam Perry Lang to “celebrate the relationship between fire and food.”  And a celebration it is.  Be sure to show up early and spend some time in the ultra-chic bar that has a stunning view of St. Paul’s Cathedral.  From there venture in to the dining room where you can still see the London landmark and enjoy a great meal from two of the culinary world’s finest.  We’d highly recommend the Wood Oven.
Wood Stone Connection: Mt. Baker Mt. Baker WS-MS-6-RFG-IR-W

Day 4

Lunch: Piccolino Ristorante e Bar.  With a focus on fresh seasonal ingredients, Piccolino brings a bit of an Italian neighborhood to the London scene.  With several locations in the London metro area, why not try the Wimbledon location, and if it’s its early July what better way to prepare for Strawberries and Cream than with lunch at Piccolino’s.  The Quattro Stagioni is worth at least four slices…
Wood Stone Connection: Mt. Baker WS-MS-6-RFG-W or Mt. Ranier WS-MS-7-RFG-W

Dinner: Bread Street Kitchen.   Gordon Ramsay’s Bread Street Kitchen, located at One New Change, is just around the corner – literally – from Barbecoa, and yet has a completely different vibe. Sit in the main restaurant section, or consider dining at the community table.  For something out of the oven, we’d recommend the Crispy Pig’s Head (wild name, great dish!) and the Tamarind Chicken Wings starters, and for a main, try the oven Roasted Lobster.  Whatever you have, Chef Simon Gregory’s dishes are sure to impress.
Wood Stone Connection: Mt. Baker WS-MS-6-RFG & Bistro 4343

As we said, there are too many great locations in London to list them all.  Consider this round 1.  Let us know if you make it to any of these locations and tell us here or on Facebook & Twitter if we missed your favorite Wood Stone location!

Want to visit another city and take a Wood Stone Tour?  Search by category:  Great City Tours.

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