People are always asking me to recommend places to eat in London, and I should really compile a little directory of my favourites, but if you’re looking for somewhere grown-up, fun and full of atmosphere then I can highly recommend Bob Bob Ricard. It manages to be both glamorous and lighthearted all at the same time, which is unusual in London. Or anywhere, really! I’ve been there a few times for lunch, now (must go for dinner – that’s next on the list) and each visit felt like a proper treat without being stuffy or overly formal.
Bob Bob Ricard has a truly grand feel – like the inside of a luxurious, old-fashioned railway carriage or posh hotel dining room. With its bespoke lighting and the beautiful handmade paper that lines the walls, there’s a real sense of being somewhere special. I love the private dining room (above) with the lamps set into the middle of the table – it would be brilliant place to have birthday party. Sexy lighting and a glamorous, “days gone by” kind of vibe.
Lunch here is an occasion, rather than just a pit-stop to refuel or a place to rest your legs. The food is excellent with plenty of options for those who want to fully gorge themselves – Venison Steak Tartare, Braised Shoulder of Lamb, Chateaubriand for One – as well as quite a few lighter, salady pickings. And the service is perfect – formal but with a hint of humour behind the eyes, encouraged no doubt by the owner – Bob Bob himself – who is as charismatic and sprightly as they come, with an infectious joie de vivre that makes you want to sod going back to work after lunch and simply sit there drinking champagne all afternoon.
Bob Bob Ricard is that rare kind of place that makes me want to “go out” – it makes me feel excitable and alive and glad to be in the middle of an amazing city. If you’re visiting London, then add a lunch stop into your itinerary. (Book well in advance.) If you live in London, add this establishment to your mental list of places to go; it’s handy if you’re stuck in the West End and want to avoid the usual places to eat – diners and noodle bars and trendy grills that don’t take bookings and have queues around the block – and it’s a great place to take friends, family and work clients.
Bob Bob Ricard is now open for lunch at the weekends, too – excellent news if you like to take a Saturday trip into town and want to have a leisurely, luxury lunch. I urge you to try the lobster burger and also the ceviche starter and prawn cocktail. And of course, a glass of champagne is almost obligatory in this place – there’s a “Press for Champagne” button at every table!
You can find more pictures, menus and booking details on the Bob Bob Ricard website here.