Jul 19 2013

Tom's Kitchen

This is a very disappointing restaurant. There are now three Tom’s Kitchen restaurants, one in Chelsea (the original restaurant which opened in 2006), one in Somerset House, and now one in Canary Wharf, which opened a few weeks ago, and which I visited as it is located close to my work. Tom’s Kitchen is a modern British brasserie serving comfort food, and tries to use UK-based suppliers wherever possible, and uses sustainable fish and they try to avoid endangered fish like tuna. The owner of these places is the famous chef Tom Aiken.

When Tom’s Kitchen first opened in Canary Wharf I was keen to go there and I went there with my work colleagues Deepak and Trevor, and we had a really bad experience there, but because I had forgotten my camera on this occasion, I was quite angry that I had to come back once more to take pictures so I could do a proper review. When I went with Deepak and Trevor we arrived at 12.15 at Tom’s Kitchen to find it 20% full (80% empty) and were told by the waitress that they could not let us in as they were fully booked and we had to come back in an hour. We were stunned by this, as the restaurant was so empty, and we begged for a table which they gave us in the end, and told us we had to give it back by 13.00 and eat quickly (which sort of did not make sense as previously they had offered us a table in one hour, ie at 13.00). This sort of unnecessary “we are so amazing, you need to book” attitude really annoyed us, and I had the same exact problem when I went back in a weeks’ time with my friend David and they would not give us a table, despite the fact the place was now only 50% full, but after asking them and being persistent, once again in the end they gave us a table.

The interior is quite plain, casual, like in a typical brunch/ lunch restaurant. When I went there the first time with Deepak and Trevor, I ordered “Spatchcock Baby Chicken with barbeque sauce and cucumber salsa” and it cost £20.50 about which I was totally shocked. £20 for a main course is a Michelin star restaurant price not a Canary Wharf Brasserie price. The chicken was ok, but there was not that much of it, which just does not justify the price. Trev and Deepak ordered “Fishcakes with buttered spinach, tomato sauce” and I am so upset I did not take a picture of this dish as it was so tiny, and like a starter portion and cost £14.50. The poor men were so disappointed and left feeling hungry despite paying so much. The second time when I went there with David, and you can see this in pictures, I ordered “Chicken Schnitzel with slow roast tomatoes, sweet peppers, pine nuts” and once again it was an unreasonable £19.30. It was nice, I did enjoy it, but I thought the price was inadequate for the portion that left me hungry in a few hours. I also ordered a side for £4 of “Tomato, Orange & Cucumber Salad”, which I sort of liked, even though I would not put oranges with tomatoes and cucumbers together myself, I thought it was nice, but once again so tiny. David ordered a Beef Burger with pickled gherkins, sweet onion relish, cheddar and bacon. Even though David asked for a rare burger, he got a well done burger, which you can see in the pictures. The burger is usually served with fries buy David ask to have it with a rocket salad. Another problem that we had was that they actually forgot about us and brought our food to us 1h late.

I still do not understand why Tom’s Kitchen charges the prices that they charge, a meal here cost me £35 and for this, I can go and have lunch in a Michelin star restaurant where the portions will be bigger and the food impeccable. Their food is ok, some dishes are actually quite nice, but typical brunch food and even though I think the menu is a bit more creative than your average brunch restaurant, featuring dishes like the Chicken Schnitzel that I had, I am not going to go back unless they raise the standard or lower the prices. My colleagues Edward and DJ also went there and they said they had a horrendous meal where they kept bringing them the wrong and really poor wine, and they had to complain to the manager.

Date: 19/ 07/ 13
Price for 2 people with some alcohol and service charge: £77.34
Location: Canary Wharf

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Tom's Kitchen
11 Westferry Circus, E14 4HD
United Kingdom
Tom's Kitchen Reviewed by Hungry Bee Maija on . Rating: 1.5