Forty Dean Street

Why go here:

For traditional Italian in a family run restaurant that’s been running in the heart of Soho for almost 20 years.

What it looks like:

The restaurant is quite plain in comparison to its flashy neighbours but the tables outside are perfect for people watching in the summer. The waiters do warn you to be careful of being pickpocketed though!

The food:

The set menu is one of the best value deals in Soho. We opted for the 3 course lunch menu because it was a nice, sunny afternoon and what better way to soak up the sunshine than in the midst of Soho’s stylish crowds, sipping on wine and tucking into some lovely Italian.

For starters, I opted for the crab cakes which came with an avocado salsa and a pomegranate & radish salad. The cakes were big and meaty and the crab was beautifully fresh.

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My mains was a grilled chicken dish with a quinoa salad. The chicken had a nice chargrilled skin on the outside but the inside felt  a bit bland. Also, the quinoa, though tasty, was slightly greasy and made the dish seem a bit heavy overall. A lighter, fruity quinoa side would have better complemented the chicken.IMG_0311

My friend’s main was spaghetti in a white wine sauce, loaded with juicy clams was much better.

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For desserts, my friend got the cheesecake which was decent but I was definitely the subject of food envy of several fellow diners with my orange panna-cotta- a rich and intensely creamy texture with the fresh flavours of orange and honey and srved with fresh figs and raspberries.

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Verdict:

The food isn’t exactly innovative but its good quality and definitely one of the best value set menus in Soho! The people watching aspect is of course an added benefit, providing constant entertainment.

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