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June 13, 2006

Filed under: Uncategorized — ros @ 3:11 pm

I was lucky enough to eat here in late February as a belated Valentine’s day treat. The restaurant is situated on the very picturesque high street in Pinner in a charming 16th century building. The decor in the dining rooms is simple but stylish and complements the black timbered walls nicely. The only gripe I had with the general atmosphere here was the music which was eclectic in a bad way.The service here is excellent. There were minor communication problems which led to us being asked our orders twice but I guess nowhere is perfect! The staff are very friendly and on this evening had the time to chat to some of the customers after their meals, which added to the pleasantly relaxed atmosphere.

It is no surprise that this place has been featured in the Michelin guide. The food is top quality and so beautifully presented you'd think they'd spent hours arranging things on plates. Somehow they manage to produce the dishes in a few minutes and the results are still excellent. I started with a game bird terrine which came with a lovely orange zest sauce. I was in my kitchen for weeks after trying to replicate it! I ordered the salmis of woodcock to follow. Unfortunately it was off but, guessing that I liked game, the chef offered to make me a venison dish that was not on the menu. It is not often you find a restaurant so accommodating. In the end I opted for the lobster with pistachio risotto and champagne sauce. I found the risotto to be a little too sticky but the lobster itself was beautiful as was the sauce. We finished with a tarte tatin with a cinnamon ice-cream. This was good, nothing very special, but again the presentation was stunning.

Of course, you get what you pay for and Friends isn’t what you would call cheap. It would be unfair to say it was overpriced but I have had food of equally good quality for less money further away from London. Having said that, this is an excellent place to take someone for a romantic dinner on a special occasion. Definitely recommended.

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