Elephant & Castle


*** (3 stars)

This Americanized English pub has a pleasant atmosphere and good service.

There  are about a dozen authentic English pub dishes, and a larger selection of American sports bar type items. I only tried the pub pretzels, which we extremely doughy and covered in oil. I can’t recommend them.

There is a decent selection of draft beers, and a somewhat limited bottle list.

Elephant & Castle
185 N Wabash Ave
Chicago, IL 60601
(312) 345-1710

Roux at Parliament Square

***** (5 stars)

We were fortunate to find a table available when we wandered in for a late lunch. There is a superb prix fixe lunch menu at a very affordable price (so affordable, we couldn’t resist spending several times as much on a wonderful Corton Charlemagne, the perfect accompaniment).

I selected a cassoulet of squid and smoked mussels as my starter. It was richly flavored without being excessively buttery, although there was certainly plenty of that on the wonderful toast served with it.

For my main I had the mackerel. This is a dish for true fish lovers, as it’s of course quite fishy, but was not at all oily, just moist, and with a perfectly crisped skin. The accompanying beets were luscious.

A wonderful cheese trolley capped off a delightful meal. Professional yet friendly service increased our enjoyment, making us feel particularly lucky to have been squeezed in without a booking.

Highly recommended as a dressy, sophisticated retreat from the tourist-choked streets outside!

Roux at Parliament Square
11 Great George Street
Parliament Square
London, SW1P 3AD
+44 20 7334 3737

The Pub Orlando

**** (4 stars)

Great atmosphere in this version of a traditional pub on steroids. Excellent assortment of beers, wines and whiskeys. I particularly like that there are reasonably priced tasting flights of each, and in many cases you can choose the tasting line up yourself.

The menu is great, although the food wasn’t quite as wonderful as the descriptions sounded. Nevertheless there are some offerings beyond the usual sports bar and pub food, and also novel blendings of the two. Our favorite of everything we tried was the crispy shrimp, which was flash fried in a wasabi batter and server on a thai sweet chili sauce.

Note that valet parking is free, but the parking garage isn’t validated.

The Pub Orlando
9101 International Dr
Orlando, FL 32819
(407) 352-2305

Ye Olde Kings Head

**** (4 stars)

If you like English food, this is a great  spot for it. Most is authentic, and what’s not authentic is in general an improvement. The BLSt used English bacon, and was a delicious combination of ingredients. The Ploughman’s Platter was more extensive than any I’ve had in England. And the chicken salad had just the right amount of curry.

The decor is really charming, much quainter than most real English pubs.There’s a cozy dining space and also a more traditional pub.  There’s also an extensive outside dining area along the sidewalk.

Next door is an English shop where you’ll find many hard to obtain foodstuffs.

Ye Olde Kings Head
116 Santa Monica Blvd
Santa Monica, CA 90401
(310) 451-1402