Category / Eating Out

A Night Out At The Savoy Hotel

A Night Out At The Savoy Hotel

A night out at The Savoy Hotel mostly spent at Kaspar’s Seafood Restaurant.  We could have started the evening with a cocktail at the world-famous American Bar or ended our meal with a night cap in the art-deco Beaufort Bar … keep reading to find out more about this wonderful central London gem.

It’s the only road here in the UK you can drive on the left.  Yes, people. The Savoy Hotel on The Strand in the heart of London.   You know you’re in for a treat in both luxury and service, at least, when you see the Lalique crystal fountain and top-hat doffing doormen at the grand entrance.

A Night Out At The Savoy Hotel

As you walk through the hotel foyer, the first thing you notice is the beautiful flower displays, and this is the start of many.

A Night Out At The Savoy Hotel

Kaspar’s is a wonderful seafood bar at the rear of The Savoy Hotel in London. For those not in the know, this London institution has hosted royalty and world leaders to legends of the stage and screen. If only the walls could talk, I’d be there for hours.

The legend of Kaspar

For almost 90 years the Hotel has offered dining parties of thirteen the company of Kaspar the Cat. Thankfully, not a real puss but a statue created by the architect Basil Ionides in 1926. Kaspar sits on ‘unlucky’ tables with a napkin around his neck, a full place-setting before him, ready to enjoy every course served. Kaspar’s Seafood Bar and Grill is the former River Restaurant and named after the ‘cat’.


August is an expensive month for me; it’s my birthday and my Mum’s. She loves seafood, we’ve eaten at Kaspar’s in the past and sat at their art deco bar which takes up the middle of the huge room. This time, we’re treated to a table close to the River, at the back of the Restaurant, and get to glimpse the Thames through the huge trees which also provide a screen for the bedrooms above us.

Kaspar’s Seafood Restaurant

Champagne for Mum and me, the house is Louis Roederer (£18.50), so we were in great company. Mr settled for a glass of house white wine, La Loupe (£9.50), a white Grenache with white fruits and fruity notes which worked well with his starter.

A Night Out At The Savoy Hotel

Service here is attentive, not at all imposing.  Our waiter Ryan always had the right answer to our questions and a lovely smile.

Gorgeous sourdough arrived with soft cheese and butter, brown and white.

A Night Out At The Savoy Hotel

The starters were superb, but after I scanned the menu, I knew that it would be a large main course. Mr was the only one who opted for a starter but boy what a starter

The lobster and crab bisque was everything and more (£18.00).


Mum chose the Fruits de Mer Platter (£39.00) for her main course.  Sadly, my picture was blurry.  A crushed ice platter arrived with four oysters, four huge prawns, white crab meat and two fat scallops.  Mum ordered a side of skinny fries (£5.00). Excellent value.

I had the Atlantic cod fish and chips (£20.00) which is one of the tastiest plates of food I’ve had in a while. A huge piece of cod in the lightest batter had been fried and crisped to perfection. When cut large flakes of cod fell onto the plate, only to be stopped by a pea crush and thin whippet fries.

A Night Out At The Savoy Hotel

Mr chose Halibut, prawns and chorizo (£39.00) with a side of new potatoes (£5.00).  There’s not much needed when you get the best quality products into your kitchen. As a chef, all you need to do is know how to cook them.  And the chefs at Kaspar’s certainly have the skills.  He fancied a glass of white wine to work well with the fish.   A super crisp Domaine de l’Eglantiere arrived, a little steep at (£18.50) but Mr said it was well worth it and was the perfect compliment to his Halibut.

A Night Out At The Savoy Hotel

We looked at each other, beaten by the portions. No room for dessert.

There was, however, a Happy Birthday lollipop and a few iced bonbons which we managed to force down. I have no idea if Mum got it home in one piece, but she insisted on taking home her lollipop as a reminder of her beautiful evening.

A Night Out At The Savoy Hotel

The total for our meal, including 12.5% service (£23.38), was £210.38 (£61.00 was alcohol), which included free still and sparkling mineral water.

As we leave, we poke our nose into the shop and see the Chocolatier hard at work, beautiful works of art too by The Biscuiteers who have recreated the uniform of the mixologists at the world-famous American Bar and the Savoy Cocktail Book.

A Night Out At The Savoy Hotel

We say goodbye to the Hotel and Kaspar, the huge topiary cat, keeping an eye on proceedings outside his home.

A Night Out At The Savoy Hotel

Kaspar’s Seafood Bar & Grill‎, The Savoy, Strand, London, WC2R 0EU+44 (0) 20 7420 2111.

Carbon Neutral Le Pain Quotidien

Le Pain Quotidien is doing a fabulous job by reducing and offsetting its carbon emissions, but it’s aiming high.  LPQ will be carbon neutral in all of its restaurants by 2020.  So what better way than to host a dinner to talk about what carbon neutrality means in practice.

Carbon Neutral Restaurant

It’s rare I don’t eat meat.  Don’t get me wrong, I can go without it, but I just know how to handle it as an ingredient.  Plants I’m not too sure of.  Le Pain Quotidien or LPQ has always impressed me, and when I get an invite to one of their events, I always try to be there.  Their City branch, right outside Monument tube was the venue for a Vegan supper, celebrating their carbon neutral status.

Monument Tube branch

The menu wasn’t altogether appealing as a meat-lover, but as ever, LPQ pulled off a magnificent feast.

Vegan Menu

LPQ Green Credentials

Not to forget the point of the evening, there was an informal address from the advisory group co2logic who measure and pinpoint where and how to change.  So how does this chain, known throughout the world, manage it?   Well, they calculate their carbon emissions, reduce and offset them and invest in a carbon reducing project.  They’ve chosen to invest in UpEnergy Group’s cook stove project which provides Ugandan communities with an alternative to their three stone fires.  In the restaurants, it’s looking at cooking and cooling mechanisms, materials used in-store from seating to lighting, delivery to waste.

Interior of restaurant

Vegan Menu

The Menage à Trois is a favourite of Alain Coumont, the chain’s founder, and the base hummus recipe is in his cookbook Le Pain Quotidien Cookbook.  Three small bowls of beetroot, roasted carrot and chickpea hummus were scooped out with vegetable sticks and bread.

Hummus three ways

Hummus, 3 ways

Roasted carrot hummus

Beetroot hummus

Chilli Sin Carne is also in the cookbook, and this vegan bean chilli’s main ingredient is tofu.  I didn’t feel denied of meat in the slightest.  It was a bowl of delicious and my dining partner was pretty impressed.

Chilli Sin Carne

The Pot Au Feu was full to brimming with chunky vegetables, and quinoa and served with more LPUK bread.

Pot Au Feu

Just in case we had room, an organic lentil and avocado salad was a bright plate of freshly shaved fennel, raw slaw, chickpeas, drizzled with a basil vinaigrette.

Lentil and Avocado Salad

A wedge of Pear and Chocolate Cake was next and a portion too far, so we shared this and the chia seed and coconut milk pudding.

Chocolate & Pear Cake

Chia Pudding

Did I say that this veritable feast was washed down with free-flowing wine for those who wanted?

Red & White Wine

“Good For You And Good For The Planet” indeed.

Le Pain Quotidien