Archive for the ‘London EC2’ Category

Pontis Polo Bar, Bishopsgate, Liverpool St

February 16, 2009

Visited: Sunday 8th February 2009

Interior: All Pontis ‘restaurants’ have a comforting feel of the 1970s about them. This one is a bit different – unreconstructed leatherette, tiled and fluorescent lit caffdom at its best. No natural light and a strong smell of deep fat frying means that the Polo bar feels nicely unironic and unselfaware. You order at the counter and sit in a cosy, if battered, booth.

Food: No granary bread here! I had 2 slices of ‘plastic’ whit e toast with mushrooms (probably tinned but perfectly edible) and a nice orange tea. My companion had the same with beans and black coffee and said ‘it was lovely’.

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Figaro One, Moorfields

March 19, 2008

Friendly city sandwich bar

Visited: Tuesday 26th February 2008

This is a standard city sandwich bar, which deserves a positive post because they allowed me to sit in and have a mug of tea Рnote mug Р without any food at 1pm, because of the friendliness and immense efficiency with which they dealt with the huge queue of customers getting takeaway sandwiches, baked potatoes and pasta and because of the huge range of fillings on display. Kudos to Figaro!

Piccolo Bar, Gresham Street, City of London

May 18, 2007

Visited: Thursday 17th May 2007, last visited 7th April 2011

Friendly, late-opening haven in the city, much-used by cab drivers.

Interior: I have never been inside the upstairs room, set aside for black cab drivers (although I know of non-cabbies who have and the cabbies often come into the downstairs room). The downstairs room is fine if you’re okay with being in a basement. There’s a smidgen of natural light from glass panels in the ceiling (the sort you walk over in the pavement) and the kind of bare-brick walls one normally sees in upmarket pizzerias. Sky Sports News is *always* on. Still, your dinner will come down in the most fantastic dumbwaiter. Don’t forget to close the door behind it so they can pull it up again.

Food: Generous well-priced portions. Somewhere you can get a hot meal at 9pm should you want to. I had a nice bowl of their ricotta and spinach canelloni and a decaff coffee which really was lovely. I often have it during the break in my choir rehearsals (in the church next door) and not only is it one of the nicest ones I know, but nobody ever makes a fuss about my ordering decaff. My only gripe about the food is that it’s quite difficult to order healthily – they always seem to have run out of veg by 6pm.

In summary: I would always recommend this one for the welcome, the late opening hours and the decent sized portions. A little corner away from the suits in the heart of the city.