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“Simple but good”
Review of Le Cellier du Midi - CLOSED

Le Cellier du Midi
Cuisines: French
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
London, United Kingdom
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Simple but good”
Reviewed November 5, 2013

We visited the restaurant for a special occasion, and overall we were pleased with the outcome. The restaurant is in a small street off a main road in Hampstead and we were lucky with parking, as the road it's in is resident-only until 10pm, something to be careful about if you're driving there. It's clearly sign-posted, but even people familiar with the area may not be aware of it, as it is - as the name suggests - in a cellar. You walk down some steep steps to get to the restaurant, so if someone has difficulty with stairs this may not be the best choice.

Inside, the restaurant is very unpretentious and the decor is a little dated and perhaps tired, but the atmosphere is cosy, welcoming and as other reviewers have said, reminiscent of restaurants of the 1970's/80's. Indeed, it reminded me of a small family-run italian restaurant I used to visit many years ago - warm and wecoming, without being overly fancy. The restaurant is small and the there is not a huge amount of room, but we didn't feel crowded, despite the fact that it was full.

The menu is not huge or particularly varied, but neither of us struggled to find something to eat. It's a set price for two or three courses, with supplements for certain dishes. To start my partner had a pancake stuffed with salmon and spinach whilst I opted for onion soup, both of which were good, if not spectacular. Main courses were steak in a mustard sauce and rack of lamb. The steak was asked for Medium-Rare and was exactly that (a pet hate of mine is when it's not cooked for as requested - why ask if you're not going to listen?) and the sauce was delicious. The lamb was a little over-done for my taste - I prefer it pink - but to be fair I didn't ask for it that way and I know many people prefer it well done. In no way was it overcooked and once again, it was served with a delicious sauce. I could easily have eaten more of it. The mains were served with a small selection of fresh vegetables and lyonaise potatoes, which were good.

I'm not a dessert person, but my partner (who is from Belgium) had crepes in Grand Marnier and, as something of an expert, pronounced them "good, but very boozy!". It's the sort of dessert I would have expected to be flambeed, but in truth there wasn't room to do it at the table and judging by the state of the plate at the end, I don't think there were any complaints!

All in all, it was good, simple food, well prepared and served, at what were reasonable prices, particularly given the area. My only real gripe was with the wine list. The choice wasn't extensive and the prices were rather rich. I was driving so wasn't drinking and there were no options of wine by the glass, only a small selection of half-bottles. Being charged £20 for a half bottle of (admittedly nice) wine did seem rather excessive and this was by no means the most expensive choice on the menu. In this day and age, with so many people not drinking and driving, this was probably the only aspect that did disappoint.

Overall - a lovely restaurant with good food and good service, at reasonable prices - if you're not drinking wine.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank MrHarlequin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

18 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    12
    5
    1
    0
    0
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
london
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Brilliant French Cuisine in London”
Reviewed October 13, 2013

The ambiance, the location, the low ceilings, the attentive service, the great wine and the sensational food made a special occasion exceptional. I would go into detail but it's best that you go and enjoy the experience for yourselves... A simply Brilliant evening. Merci Beaucoup.

  • Visited October 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank EDDIE B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bray
Level 4 Contributor
32 reviews
15 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“Nostaligic visit”
Reviewed August 22, 2013

My Wife & I went to Le Cellier when we first met in the early 70's. Delighted to find it was still operating (different owners) so had Supper recently. We were so impressed with the excellent Food, Service and general ambience. Nicolas could not have been more helpful. It is a Cellar (the clue is in the name) so don't expect stunning views or a terrace. But for a cosy romantic meal in Hampstead there is no where better. The Rack of Lamb was the best ever!

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank steveBray
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Norfolk
Level 5 Contributor
62 reviews
38 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
“Great to re-frequent after more than 20 years”
Reviewed August 1, 2013

Four of us had dinner here on Wednesday evening.
The food was very traditional and very tasty - and very reasonably priced.
Three of us had dined here before - between 20 and 28 years ago.
On leaving the restaurant, we couldn't work out why it had taken us so long to return.

Very accomplished chef and waiting staff.
We'll return sooner next time.

  • Visited August 2013
    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank mikeyNorfolk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Treasure in Hampstead, London”
Reviewed July 5, 2013

This gem is worth the short trip from London. I found this place over 10 years ago and it is as wonderful now as it was then. It's delightful, atmospheric, authentic and the food is fantastic. The family owners still run it with detail and care, even after 30+ years. They do all it all here - cook, serve and chat to ensure you're having a lovely meal. The wine list is excellent, with a full range of options. I chose a terrific chablis that warranted a photo of the label in the hopes of finding it again. The onion soup is always perfect here - light, delicate and flavorful. All of the conversations I overheard from nearby tables had the same theme when checking out, "Thank you. My meal was delicious. Can I have a card, as we'll be coming back."

  • Visited July 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank Kathleen S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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