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Perhaps the best thing about a restaurants is making a point of returning again, and again and trying some of the old favourites, looking forward to a particular meal and being fairly certain of a good time regardless of the company. The Ivy Café in Richmond is such a restaurant. The food is good, not in the rich luxurious sense, but everyday recipes done really well. Let me introduce you to a most indulgent lasagne. Whilst we are here, I think London might have the best restaurants in the world, I may not have been to every country in the world hence the opinion is biased, but London is pretty hard to beat when it comes to dining. So far.
The Ivy café in Richmond is as you would expect any Ivy establishment to be; bougie, extra and with a quiet decadence about it. The décor is incredible, like something out of the twenties? or the Forties? I don’t know… but it is of an era beyond the present time, but it is not archaic or twee, this is a tastefully decorated and beautiful space with a lot of atmosphere even when its empty. It is indulgent and a place that requires you to maybe dress it up a little. Round tables with surrounding chairs, and open booths with leather chairs. The tables can do with being a little roomier, I cannot help but feel snugged into the space. The service is fine, if a little impersonal on the odd occasion from the odd wait staff but for the most part, it is fine.
The Ivy does a lot of things right, the food, the ambience, the decor, an excellent array of starters; go for the prawn tempura and thank me later. The duck liver parfait is perfect, and as a main, if lasagne is not your thing, then the lamb shoulder is a thing of utter bliss as the tastes sink into your tastebuds or the classic steak, egg and chips. It is ideal for breakfast, or lunch or dinner, tried and tested and consistently good on all fronts and the menu is reasonably priced so it won’t break the bank. Book a table, well in advance but sometimes ring up to see if they can accommodate you, which they sometimes can. Walk-ins can also be sat but it is best to reserve ahead of time.
The Ivy Café- 9-11 Hill Street, TW9 1SX | www.theivycaferichmond.com