One of the great things about London is that you could actually get seated next to Hugh Grant at a casual restaurant chain.
It didn’t happen to me, but it happened to the friend I dined with at Giraffe, a well-known restaurant chain in the UK. It was at a different location of the same chain that she consumed sweet potato fries and chatted loudly with her friends within arm’s reach of Hugh Grant (who ate a sandwich alone at a window seat, in case you were wondering).
As if this weren’t enough of a draw for Giraffe, there’s also the fact that its food matches the quality and taste of a much more upscale restaurant. Giraffe is great for Americans who want a quick fancy-feeling meal that is also delicious and filling. The menu has something for everyone and is a little bit Euro-chic without being intimidating. You’ll want to hang out there.
I ate outside at Giraffe on a beautiful warm night downtown and ordered the Toasted Goat’s Cheese Focaccia sandwich and sweet potato fries, at the advice of my London friend. The sandwich was fantastic and the fries were perfect–I hate to say it, but their perfect balance of sweet, salty, crunchy and soft beats Bat 17’s sweet potato fries by far. Feeling jet-lagged, I ordered an iced coffee as well, which was refreshingly bold (British coffee is stronger than America’s) and served in a cutesy mug to boot. To top it all off, everything was reasonably priced, ready within 10 minutes, and served on a wooden board that made it all feel very gourmet.
If you’re in London, you should definitely sample the vast array of local fare and fit in some traditional British food. But if you’re craving a universally delicious meal from a reliable yet unique chain that Hugh Grant endorses, stop into Giraffe. Cheers to that!