“ BRITISH. 6 Old Court Place, Kensington Church Street, W8. Tel: +44 (0)20 7937 6462/1263. Fax: +44 (0)20 7376 0510. „
Maggie Jones is a London restaurant situated between Kensington High Street and Notting Hill Gate and is an easy walk from either tube station. Specialising in classic British cuisine, Maggie Jones serves uncomplicated food at reasonable prices and is fast becoming one of my favourite restaurants in West London. First and foremost, the food is magnificent and unpretentious. It is simple but cooked extremely well with wonderful ingredients. The selection covers all your favourite traditional British dishes from steak, through to pheasant and a good array of pies. I have been a number of times now and can highly recommend the fisherman's pie or the lamb shoulder as great examples of classic food cooked to perfection. Note that with main dishes vegetables are served (and sold) separately and these range from mash potato to peas and bacon - I can highly recommend the later on a cold winters evening such as the one last Sunday when I last ate there. To accompany the culinary delights is also a good selection of wine many served by the half bottle for those wanting more than a glass but less than a full bottle. I'm always keen on a Fleurie that i think costs about £15 for the half bottle and £25 for the full. The decor is fascinating and the restaurant cosy and intimate but spacious at the same time as it covers 3 floors. Every nook and cranny is taken up giving the restaurant a cluttered and homely feel with everything from baskets to birdcages adorning the walls, ceilings, rafters and anything in between. Lighting is perfectly gloomy with candlelight filling each table. I must admit to only having been there in the winter as it's the perfect venue for a winter meal both in heart-warming food and ambiance. Whether this works as well in the summer I cannot comment. Service is always with a smile and a warm welcome but never over fussy or obtrusive. I personally dislike waiters fussing over me when trying to enjoy a quiet meal and the level of attentiveness here is pitched just right as you never feel ignored. Maggie Jones is not cheap and this may be a slight downside. Nor is overly expensive but perhaps a little on the pricey side given that an side dishes will add at least £3 to the main dish which in itself can range from £12 - £20. That said, portions are hearty so you get a good feed for your pennies and the money is worth it for the overall experience. I can highly recommend this restaurant if visiting the Albert Hall or many of the museums further up the road. I never think this area has a great selection of decent eateries that are not over hyped or overpriced so this one is a pleasant surprise.
I just love this restaurant. There is very little that I can say against it. The food is divine, the wine list impressive, the service attentive (if a little too camp) and the atmosphere at once intimate and open. The menu consists of a lord of the manor's dream; red meat cooked to your penchant, white meat so tender it will make your taste buds dance vegetarian dishes that make you wonder why you ever ate red or white meat. Every time that I have been there, I have been overwhelmed by the number of dishes that I would like to eat; this is certainly no restaurant to hurry the ordering process. Starters and desserts are worthy of as much attention as the mains. Prepare to leave feeling replete. The wine list is diverse and perfect for the menu. The house wine comes in two litre carafes and you are charged for what you drink, but if fine wine is your fancy then do not despair as there are some delectable vintage red and whites that are to die for. The restaurant is spread over three (or is it four) floors and each table has its own character. I have never sat in the same place at Maggie Jones and each meal has given me a different flavour of the M.J. experience. If I was to have any criticism it would be that the service can be erratic on rare occasions, but usually it is faultless, and there are far too many pros to condemn it on this slight nitpick. The bill can add up as well, but it is really up to you how much you spend. It is just that everything tastes so good you will want to savour every single course. As I said at the beginning, I just love this place, but I am not the only one, so ensure that you book in advance so as not to be disappointed.