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Silk Restaurant (Bar, Restaurant, Hotel)

Picture of Silk Restaurant in Soho, London

The Courthouse Doubletree by Hilton, 19-21 Great Marlborough St, Soho, London, W1F 7HL
Cuisine: Pan Asian Average Price: £40
Tel: 020 7297 5555 | Email to Silk Restaurant | Transport: Oxford Circus | Write review

Silk Restaurant Review

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Saturday night in Soho – it’s one of a kind. Young, hip Londoners rub shoulders with thickly made-up old drag queens. Tourists gaze shyly into lurid red-lit sex shops, and seasoned boozers spill out defiantly onto those famous streets.

It was the hottest day of the year when I squeezed through the usual weekend throngs toward Silk restaurant. Slipping quietly through the doors into the cool, dark corridors of the elegant Courthouse Doubletree hotel, there could not have been more of a contrast.

We were directed through to the restaurant itself, with an air of scepticism about us. Hotel restaurants are funny old things. Yes, there are a few gems in London - think Asia de Cuba at St Martins Lane, Marcus Wareing at The Berkeley, or the Sheraton Park Tower’s One-O-One. But there are also some horrors, unforgivably catering badly for a captive audience of tourists who understandably – and tragically - leave our capital accepting the historical dogma; English food is crap. And I don’t blame them. I’ve eaten in some shockers.

So, it was with some trepidation and a persistently hopeful heart that I stepped into the Silk restaurant dining room. And what a room. Until fairly recently, it was an old courthouse (hence the name of the hotel, genius). The dark wood panelling, the judge’s bench, and the historic glass globe ceiling all make for a beautiful dining environment and an air of scandal. The fact that we were the only people in there for the majority of the meal only served to heighten the sense of drama, although it did seem strange that while just a few feet away the streets were being stamped by thousands of hungry City dwellers, we were sitting in an intimidatingly quiet courthouse turned restaurant.

It’s a real throwback to the notoriously tough, utterly English judiciary system…or so you would initially think. In fact, the food is a fusion of Thai and Indian cuisine, which explains the name, a nod to the old silk routes that zig-zagged around India, Asia and beyond. But somehow, the two worlds collide happily, along with a touch of the seedier side of Soho - apparently this was where Mick Jagger had his court case in the 60s after a drugs bust, and the infamous Oscar Wilde trial was also heard here. The food, however, was not quite as exciting as the history.

As one would expect from a hotel smack-bang in the heart of tourist-central, it’s not cheap. In fact, it’s £70 a head not cheap. So we were expecting some pretty marvellous food. The starter was pleasant – a mixed platter featured a light and fluffy chick pea galette, which was the hero of the dish. There was also an unadorned piece of de-boned chicken thigh wrapped in a pandan leaf, while a confidently cooked scallop nestled, inexplicably, on a bed of tart, chopped rhubarb pieces. The silk routes were a network of trade lines designed to source the best spices in the world. But it looks like this restaurant was left off the mailing list.

Some would say that charging almost £18 for three small pieces of chicken, a modest tower of rice, and some pak choi is criminal. I’m inclined to agree, but there’s no doubt that the main course was well executed – probably the same fate of many a poor criminal to pass through the court doors. The chicken was tender, coated with a deep sticky sauce, while the vegetables represented the Thai influence.

It was good to see that the dessert did not escape the main theme of the restaurant – a smooth, if slightly uneventful chocolate mousse was improved immeasurably by some vivid chilli jelly, which was accompanied by a tangy peach sorbet and a creamy strawberry mousse.

OK, so the food didn’t quite float our boat, but it didn’t sink it either. All in all, the verdict is in: definitely worth doing time at Silk.
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Customer Reviews for Silk Restaurant

Average (based on 1 votes): 1 Atmosphere: Value: Quality:

The following customer reviews are not endorsed by Fluid London and are simply those of users who wish to publish their independent experiences of Silk Restaurant.

“I'm not esaliy impressed. . . but that's impressing me! :)”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Miss Darrence Darrence, mMeoIDxGhV (6 years 5 months 2 days ago)

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Silk Restaurant Opening Hours

Monday: Closed Friday: 6:00pm - 11:00pm
Tuesday: 6:00pm - 11:00pm Saturday: 6:00pm - 11:00pm
Wednesday: 6:00pm - 11:00pm Sunday: Closed
Thursday: 6:00pm - 11:00pm    

Additional Information

  • Cuisine Type: Pan Asian
  • Average Price: £40
  • Dress Code: Not Specified
  • Group: Hilton

Silk Restaurant Food & Drinks

  • Cuisine Type: Pan Asian
  • Average Price: £40

Silk Restaurant Food Menu

Sampling flavours from the ancient oriental trade pathways, diners take a culinary journey down the historic “Silk Route” with seasonally inspired menus of locally and internationally sourced ingredients, expertly prepared by Head Chef Rajesh Parmar and his talented team. Harking back to the days when spices were traded as precious commodities across the sub-continent and beyond, dishes are infused with the treasured tastes of the east, focusing on Chinese, Indian and Thai accents paired to create arresting flavour compositions.

Updated 22/03/2012

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"Fantastic restaurant we eat there 4 times while staying in London on a quick trip, absolutely top quility - staff absolutely obliging - we'll be back??." Which venue is this?

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"Fantastic restaurant we eat there 4 times while staying in London on a quick trip, absolutely top quility - staff absolutely obliging - we'll be back??." Which venue is this?

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