The UK has a pretty bad reputation for horrible food. A lot of English celebrity chefs talk about this reputation. Of course they are working to change the world’s mind. I’m ok with that change. How bout you?
Everything was meaty, saucy, and salty. Lamb is king in Britain and appears as often as chicken in the US. Much like the above picture, Lamb Shank pie from The Pontefract Castle. Don’t fret, because our friendly piggy also appears quite often as well. Don’t get me wrong, it was all yummy, but don’t expect to see many veggie sides. Unless its mushy peas.
Also expect some funny looks when you ask for a glass of water with lemon. I realized that its very American to expect glasses of tap water. They also don’t do tipping like we do in America. Generally the reason why American bartenders and servers dread the foreign guest at their restaurant. The reason, gratuity is included in the price. I’ll come back to this.
Lucky for me, I was able to go to Gordon Ramsay’s two restaurants in London. There was no yelling and it was a really great dinner experience. His staff was mixed, not many Brits in the mix. But I found that of London in general. Sort of like NYC, all transplants.
The only complaint I had was the upsell of pork rinds. Or as I know them from growing up, chicharrón. Gordon called them pork scratchings. The server sold me with, traditional British snack… tricky. How could I blame him, it was good… but nothing new to me.
I gave up snapping pics after the apps and didn’t photograph anything on my second visit altogether. The service, food and company was just too enjoyable. All the more reason why no additional tip perplexed me. The lovely fellows at Gordon Ramsay were very forward about not leaving an additional tip. My head nearly exploded. They further explained that an additional tip would not make it to them. Really Gordon? Or are your servers just all too charming? I’ll tell you what charmed me… the pork check stew. Oh my… Gordon Ramsay genius.
All this made me look around and think, how are these Londoners so thin? Yes, portions are smaller, not by that much. Are they replacing meals with pints?
Being away from home and routine makes for a lot of eating out. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, drinks… every day for eleven days. Yikes! At the end of it, all I wanted was a plain salad.