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“Surprisingly good”
Review of Moro Restaurant

Moro Restaurant
Ranked #938 of 23,571 Restaurants in London
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $27 - $46
Cuisines: European
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Restaurant details
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Breakfast, Late Night, Outdoor Seating, Reservations
Neighborhood: Clerkenwell
Description: It might be one of the hippest venues in one of the hippest parts of the capital but this Clerkenwell restaurant still manages to be relaxed and more concerned with good food than being trendy. The restaurant’s décor with its polished wooden floors, long zinc bar and open view to the kitchen and its charcoal grill and wood-burning oven is functional but welcoming. The Moorish cuisine complete with subtle European influence is every bit as striking as it was when the restaurant opened its doors nearly ten years ago. Tapas served all day at the bar. Reservations taken by phone and directly from our website.PLEASE NOTE - Moro restaurant is now open seven days a week. Please refer to our website for correct opening hours
Reviewed October 24, 2010

There is a risk going to a restaurant, after having read others reviews of the place. But as I did not do the booking there was no choice... But to my surprise - a menu with many tempting offers. Beetroot soup with youghurt. Perfect starter for a hungry person. As maincourse the lamb with flavoured rice.The waitress warned about the lamb being pink, which was perfectly fine. It tasted great. Others at the table had the pork and all 6 of us were really satisfied. Service was quick and efficient .

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Thank Hans L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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771 - 775 of 847 reviews

Reviewed September 2, 2010

A big family birthday at Moro has been in the pipeline for a almost half a year. After reading about it's fabulous reputation and being a fan of the cookbooks I was very excited.

Eleven of us sat down for a Saturday lunch. Our waitress was very pleasant and very accomodating to the fact that our party had one child. Almost too accomodating - assuming that the child might be picky/difficult and assuming that alternative catering would be required. Although the child enjoyed her chicken and chips, I'm sure that she was old enough to have at least looked at the menu and made her own mind up.

Even though it was quiet and the window tables were free, we were offered a table at the back of the restaurant which was away from most other diners. We did however, get a great view of the huge grill area and clay oven.

I ate the eel salad followed by lamb and tabouleh. The eel came on a skewer, with no more than four ten-pence sized pieces of eel. I chose the dish as I was new to eating eel and decided to try something different. The quantities were so small that I can't say I actually have an opinion on eel at all. The lamb was well cooked but lukewarm, accompanied by a small portion of underseasoned tabouleh and an (undressed) rocket salad. I was really quite underwhelmed by the food.

However, other member's in our party appeared to choose their courses wisely - the pork dish (with crackling) and buttery potatoes looked amazing and tasted melt in the mouth when I stole a bite. The courses looked about twice the size of my own.

And here's the rub: the quality/quantity of the courses were completely inconsistent. As I have said, my middle eastern style lamb was lukewarm and small. I ended up eating much more bread than I would have liked just to fill up. The pork dish was quite huge, and people had to leave food on their plates.

The puddings are all equally priced but are by no means equal! Someone ordered yoghurt ice cream with summer berries - this amounted to one unappealing looking pallid scoop in a glass bowl with a few blueberries and half a strawberry. Someone else ordered a raisin ice cream - this was two generous scoops and marinated raisins in rum which looked and tasted fantastic.

The waitress could have been much more attentive at refilling wine and water glasses but made up fo it by standing on a stool to take some photos of the whole party.

Overall, a lovely way to spend an afternoon as we were unrushed and unhurried, if they could just ensure a bit of consistency with their food then it would have been perfect, especially as this is quite an expensive place to eat.

Your enjoyment of this place may rest solely on your menu choices so pick wisely! I will definitely come back but next time for the bar tapas.

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1  Thank NomNomNomBrighton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 15, 2010

If you're into S&M then knock yourself out but if you like to have decent service and a dining experience that leaves you with your self-esteem in tact give Moro a miss. I have had many a delicious meal at Moro over the years and cooked from the clever Sam & Sam Clark's books for friends. However, I will not be going back after being treated like a naughty child being made to sit on the naughty step.

I'd made a reservation several weeks in advance for a group of 6. Illness made me cancel the booking down to two, which I did giving 24 hours notice. When we arrived we were shown into the annexe. A room already lacking in atmosphere, we were seated next to an American family who had clearly run out of things to say to each other after their travels and seemed overly interested in us. As there were various tables available, we asked to move into the main restaurant. The waiter was courteous and said he'd check. The maitre d' came and tutted at us and said "You are very difficult to accommodate as you were meant to be six. This is a big problem for me." This was followed by a deep sigh as he gestured in an offhand way to another table. Rather than explain that the booking had changed due to very sad circumstances I bit my tongue. I was already feeling a bit of a saddo out with my husband having had my friends understandably cancel on me and this was the cherry on the cake in bursting the atmospheric bubble.

The food was dull - I ate the salmon. It was also slow - taking over an hour to arrive by which point we decided to skip dessert and get the bill and go elsewhere for a nightcap. I asked the waiter if the owners were available as in the past they had been more hands on. He informed me that they have recently had a baby and the maitre d' was newly appointed.

Perhaps a case of power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Poor food, poor service and a rude maitre d' all yours for £100

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1  Thank Moorish71
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 9, 2010

Restaurant itself is presentable. Overall meal experience was ok. Toilets are clean. Service ok.

But, why put five people on a table for four and then have no place to put the meals. The whole time we were there there was a round table of five and six available but we couldn't have it.

A £3.50 bottle of beer was £4.50. The restaurant is in Exmouth market, not the West End????

Out of the five starters and five mains, i.e. ten dishes, six were mainly garlic with some added produce. Wish we could have said what over the over powering flavour.

The pork was the best dish but it needed more salt according to at least two who tasted it.

For the price and quality of delivery, sorry no we wouldn't go back.

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Thank avatar777
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 9, 2010

At the end of what was otherwise a marvelous month in London, I was looking forward to Saturday night dinner at Moro. I made the reservation for 7 PM, hoping that it wouldn't be too hectic. I arrived just a little before 7 with my partner, and the restaurant was pretty empty save for a few early birds eating leisurely at the bar and a few couples in the front part of the room.

Despite the abundance of waitstaff, my companion and I were left cooling our heels for a good 10 minutes before someone noticed us. Now for your local understaffed pub this might be understandable, but for a restaurant of Moro's hype, not having a front-of-house to greet guests at 7 PM (we're not talking turnover time, e.g., 4-5 PM) is unacceptable. Our waitress was clearly disinterested in providing any kind of service and the maitre'd actually had to come over and take our order.

The first courses came: I had a chorizo and warm tomato salad, while my partner had what amounted to prawns on toast. The salad was good but nothing to write home about: good-quality cherry tomatoes marinated in olive oil with some flat-leaf parsley, thrown in the pan for a few minutes with ground chorizo and red onion. A lay-up for the chef on a busy Saturday night. My partner's course was better, save for the brittle bread which probably would have been better if paired with some larger tiger prawns instead of the tiny shrimps.

As might be expected by an order hurriedly taken, they forgot my wine. This was immediately rectified. Our waitress came over, cleared our plates and asked if everything was good. OK, she seems to be making an effort.

A couple was then seated next to us and their food, incidentally, came out a good 20 minutes earlier than ours. Even more troubling was that the same waitress responsible for our table was very attentive to the one on our other side, asking whether at what temperature the gentleman would prefer his lamb -- a question which was not asked of myself even though I ordered the same thing.

My lamb -- more well done than what I would like -- came out nearly stone cold. I did not ask for it to be sent back, one because having worked at a number of restaurants in my time I know that in many cases meat is simply put under the lights for a few moments. Tender cold lamb I can eat; leathery overcooked meat I will not. The dish was fine, but again, very middle-of-the-road. If you want North African-inspired, I'd suggest going to the real thing and checking out Azou in Stamford Brook (which, by the way, is going to be completely mobbed in the fall now that Gordon Ramsay has decided to feature it on his show come October; Stamford Brook is also home to 101 Thai, which IMHO, is one of London's best Thai if you stick with the sea bass-related dishes).

At the end of the dinner, I was incensed enough to write a long note and summon the front-of-house, the AWOL maitre'd who should have been present when we first arrived. He did his best to make up for what was a seriously underwhelming experience which is the only reason why I'm not rating this establishment a "1". It was my hope he would say something to our sullen waitress, but I suspect not.

And I'm not saying anything, but it is interesting to note that we were the only non-white couple on that particular waitress's watch....just a note.

In all, on a street that boasts terrific establishments like Medcalf and the fabulous Caravan, Moro really needs to get it together. Living off exhaust fumes of past glory might do for now, but not in the long run.

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Thank epanonica
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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