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A guest blog post by Sara D’souza
Following the opening of the new Bonnie Gull Seafood Café in Islington’s Exmouth Market yesterday, we’ve rounded up five of our favourite seafood restaurants.
Bonnie Gull Seafood Café
Style: A blue and white striped awning, nautical touches and a vintage jukebox make up the 1960s seaside café theme of this Exmouth Market-based eatery.
Dishes: Beer battered North Sea haddock with beef dripping chips, a 1kg crab or the classic fish finger sandwich. Lights bites are native lobster or fresh picked crab rolls, while oysters, cockles and smoked mussels will be served the traditional way, on newspaper.
Desserts: British seaside sweets are homemade whippy ice-cream in a cone, Cornish fudge, Blackpool rock and millionaire’s shortbread.
Cost: 1kg crab is £17; fish and chips are £14 and house special Bloody Marys are £8.
Randall & Aubin
Style: Based in Soho, the white tiled walls, butcher’s hooks and marble slabs still remain from Randall & Aubin’s former incarnation as a 1930s butcher’s shop.
Dishes: Lobster is served half (325 grams) or whole (750 grams) roasted in garlic butter with chips and the seafood platter is filled with rock oysters, green-lipped mussels, and diver picked scallops and clams.
Desserts: Sweets include sticky date pudding with vanilla ice-cream, lemon and raspberry tart with double cream and flambéed vanilla crème brulee.
Cost: Half lobster from £20, seafood platter (for two) £42.50 per head and wine from £20 per bottle.
Style: Situated in Covent Garden’s theatreland, J Sheekey’s Art Deco style interiors have leather banquettes and lacquered wood panels hung with black and white photographs of actors.
Dishes: Atlantic prawns are served by the pint or half pint, crab bisque is with cream and cognac, and there’s Sheekey’s famous fish pie.
Desserts: Choose from traditional British Bramley apple pie, Italian Amalfi lemon bar with biscotti, vanilla panna cotta or hazelnut praline tart.
Cost: Half pint of prawns from £6.75, fish pie is £15.75 and wine from £21 per bottle.
Wright Brothers Oyster & Porter House
Style: Overlooking Borough Market, Wright Brothers has an open kitchen and long oyster bar. If you sit outside, you can pull up a stool at a barrel table and look out over the market stalls. Menus are chalked up on the blackboard.
Dishes: Galway Bay Irish natives no.3 are sold per oyster, while specials such as the Lindisfarne oysters come in plates of six or 12. Moules marinière and Cornish dressed crab are on the main menu.
Desserts: Chocolate truffles, crème brulee or a lemon pot with homemade shortbread will all sate your sweet tooth.
Cost: Oysters from £4.20 each and wine from £20 per bottle.
Style: This recently-opened Covent Garden restaurant has American-style diner tables and booths with neon signs and walls graffitied with giant lobsters.
Dishes: Think surf and turf. Lobsters are straight from the tank or from its charcoal grilled oven. Jumbo barbeque shrimps come in the shell and crabshack combos have crab claws, mussels and clams.
Desserts: All American puddings include cherry pie, apple and cinnamon waffles, and red velvet cake.
Cost: Whole fresh lobster from £20 and wine from £19 per bottle.