Friday, 26 February 2010 review of Rafayel's riverside restaurant, Banyan

Rafayel's Restaurant, Banyan on the Thames, reviewed on

"...Banyan’s staff [make] this a welcoming and relaxed place to eat (once we finally found it). Ene, Liina and Marko were everything good restaurant staff should be, but rarely are: charming, attentive without being pushy, eager to make recommendations and - most importantly - proud as punch of their new workplace.

"...they have good reason to be optimistic about this one’s future, because while Banyan’s sleek, modern décor and obligatory bird-of-paradise floral displays can be found in umpteen European city hotels, the views from its riverside terrace set it apart from that crowd.

"As soon as the sun comes out, the doors are flung open and the outside terrace fills up, this is sure to be transformed into a dining spot worth seeking out...

"Banyan also breaks the mould with its fusion menu. There are enough traditional favourites to avoid offending the hotel guests, several interesting twists, and Indian specialties that are particularly successful.

"Heck, I’d go back for the delicious tarka dahl alone, and, as a massive lentil fan, that’s saying something. Served with some of the biggest, meatiest lamb chops I have ever encountered, which had been expertly marinated in a special mix of spices, this was anything but bland and predictable food...

"Banyan’s wine list also covers a broad global selection. Here, once again, the staff were the stars and happily recommended several reasonably-priced options, including a Fortant de France Syrah rosé and a delicious South African Chenin Blanc, which pared well with our food choices...

"...Banyan on the Thames definitely has the potential to become an exception to the hotel restaurant rule."

To read the full article please click here

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