Randall & Aubin // Soho // London

If you’re looking for seafood in London, then a restaurant worth heading to is Randall & Aubin. This place has been running since 1911 (as their menu says so) and is very well known in the Soho area. After dark, the dining room sparkles with the reflected light of a disco ball and hums to the sound of lively music. Though if that isn’t for you, lunchtimes, particularly Sunday, are a tranquil affair. This is the flagship restaurant of television chef Ed Baines.

On offer is a selection of well-priced, “fruits de mer” seafood platters, covered with great range of shellfish, including lobster and crab. Though while the oysters aren’t cheap, there is a decent variety to choose from.

But where Randall & Aubin really stands-out for us is with its exceptionally good value, really well “cooked” dishes. The a la carte menu is a real pleaser.

We recommend the grilled line-caught tuna with roast Mediterranean vegetables, feta cheese, olive oil and oregano tapenade. The tuna is wonderful quality and is seared to perfection. The grilled flavour gives a light smoky taste to the almost fully raw fish and works well with the delightful salad. Even if you don’t like your tuna cooked in any way, you will like this.

On the “menu du jour”, Randall & Aubin do a version of the “Omelette Arnold Bennett”, a classic also served at The Delaunay. This dish is prepared with freshly poached haddock, filling an omelette which almost becomes a rich, crispy sabayon; pure heaven.

The crab and lemon risotto with pan fried Cornish red mullet and spring onions is also sublime and bursting with freshness. The acidity level is balanced and the rice is well cooked.

And while this is a seafood restaurant, don’t neglect the desserts; they are just as good as the main courses.

Overall, Randall & Aubin is a strong London establishment and will continue to be so if it keeps delivering this same level of cooking. Chef Ed Baines shows that he knows what it takes to please his dinners. We look forward to eating at Randall & Aubin again.

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