Grace Dent, Guardian food critic and Masterchef judge
MasterChef judge and Guardian food critic Grace Dent knows a thing or two about London’s food scene.
The 50-year-old author and podcast host has been honing her tastes in the capital for 25 years and is a respected name in the UK food industry.
Dent moved from Carlisle to London in 1997 and started as an editorial assistant at Marie Claire magazine.
Okra in peanut sauce at Bibi. Photo credit: Instagram
Since then she has published a restaurant column in the Evening Standard, published 12 novels including her most recent memoir, Hungry, and appeared on several television programs including Channel 4’s Very British Problems.
Dent will now join nine other celebrities in the Australian jungle for the latest series of I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here.
Dent, who describes herself as a proud East Londoner, shared with LondonWorld some of her favorite spots in the city.
The three best restaurants
“Of the new places that have opened recently, I really like BiBi on North Audley St,” she said.
Red lettuce salad from with miso aioli, cashews and crispy kale at Apricity. Photo credit: Instagram
“It’s a modern Indian restaurant.”
In her review for the Guardian, she described the fragrant okra she had there like nothing she had tasted anywhere else.
“I liked to bathe in the peanut sauce and squirt it under my armpits and behind my ears before getting dressed without showering,” she wrote.
She recommends this “weird, experimental, beautiful restaurant” for both date nights and those looking to love bomb their customers.
A woman carries two large plants away from the Columbia Road flower market in East London as summer weather gripped the United Kingdom on May 24, 2009. AFP PHOTO/Leon Neal (Image credit should read Leon Neal/AFP via Getty Images)
Next on their list is Apricity on Duke Street, a modern vegetarian/vegan restaurant helmed by Michelin green starred chef Chantelle Nicholson.
Dent, who describes herself as a part-time vegan, said: “It’s a very sustainable, environmentally conscious restaurant that is run in a very fun and lighthearted way.”
“Eat dinner, save the planet and be a superhero while eating massive amounts of brown butter with potato tubers,” she described the experience in her review.
Last but not least on their list is Milk Beach, an Australian restaurant on Manette Street.
“You walk down Greek Street, which Londoners have done a thousand times in the past, and what you don’t see is that suddenly this strange alley opens up and you walk in and there’s this whole new complex, Milk Beach is in there, ” She said.
The story goes on
She describes it as “an airy flutter through Mediterranean and Southeast Asian influences, with Sydney swagger at its heart.”
“These are my three places. If you told me tonight that I had a table there, I would say, “Yes, I’m coming.”
Ideal day trip in London
Dent describes her ideal day in London as a trip to the Columbia Road Flower Market on a Sunday.
“I think everyone should have the experience of drinking a nice coffee, buying some flowers and then eating a Sunday roast somewhere and coming out while the flowers and plants are being reduced,” she imagines wistfully.
“Then go home with an aspidistra under their arm that they have no room for.”
“This coming Sunday I decided to go see the Crown Jewels because I’ve never seen them before.”
She also enjoys the waterfront cafe in Victoria Park and a “stroll” at Stratford Westfield, before enjoying a bowl of udon at the Japan Centre.
You can follow Grace Dent’s work in her column in the Guardian and listen to her interview guests talk about their favorite comfort foods on her podcast, Comfort Eating with Grace Dent.