Opened in 1986 in an 18th century townhouse and with an historic print shop of the same name next door, Andrew Edmunds is one of the last bastions of old school Soho restaurants among a sea of new chains and trendy spots.
The restaurant is quaint and bijou set across a number of small rooms with bare wooden tables and chairs buttressed up against each other, with low lighting and candles making it an intimate and romantic space. It has a feeling of an old school Georgian London thanks to the dark chipped paint and wooden panelling, while the open bar tucked in the space between the front dining room and the kitchen is covered in wine, carafes and a few ingredients to make a small selection of aperitifs.
The menu is hand written and changes daily, along with a selection of specials on the board. The food itself is not over complicated being clean and precise and relying on spot on cooking and great ingredients. It’s a menu that takes the nose to tail concept and merges it with a hint of French rustic simplicity.
Starters tend to be simple dishes but don’t let that fool you, they may not be complicated but they are a superbly executed take on the description. One of the best things I’ve had there is the confit pigs cheek with watercress and radish. What came was a salad of dressed watercress and thinly sliced large radish together with meaty pigs cheek with crispy skin. A regular feature on the starters is the dressed crab with lemon mayonnaise; the thing is huge and amazing value at £12.50 – the entire menu is great value – and is easily the most flavour packed crab I’ve had in donkeys years.
The mains tend to feature fish and gamier meats in place of the common chicken, lamb, pork and beef. So you’ll find the likes of skate wing or roast turbot with chard and anchovies, along side hare, lamb sweetbreads, grouse, or pigeon. The meat is superb but don’t ignore the fish options, they are, in my experience, beautifully translucent.
Andrew Edmunds is a perfect romantic spot and a gem among the many great restaurants of Soho. Make sure you book or you’ll be disappointed, I’ve never seen a walk in be able to get a table.
London Lamppost Score – 4.5/5
46 Lexington Street
0207 437 5708