Food Store is located in the Lincoln Plaza London, a Curio Collection hotel by Hilton, and just a stone’s throw away from the boardwalk with a picturesque view of The City.
Eating out, whilst fun, always involves an element of indulgence, if not more than an element. There’s always that slight pang of guilt after a meal out that you’ve undone all the hard work you’ve done the previous evening at the gym. Particularly when travelling, as I imagine a lot of the clientele at the hotel will be, there’s often the sense of overindulgence.
I had just returned from a trip to Italy when I dined at Food Store, and had indulged in my fair share of pizza, gelato, and aperol spritz. I don’t regret a single bite, but, was slightly aware of the extra cargo I had brought back upon return.
Food Store is comprised of both a bar, restaurant and grocer. When I first arrived, I was kindly ushered to the upstairs bar where I saw K, already sunk into the plush vintage leather sofas, awaiting my arrival. There is an air of elegance as well as comfort to the ambience; the perfect mix for a hotel if you ask me.
We quickly ordered some cocktails which, pleasantly, were not too sweet or strong – my pet hate with cocktails. Who wants to feel as if they are drinking a sweet with their dinner?
We soon descended the spiral staircase for the main event: dinner. It may seem strange to describe a restaurant as looking ‘healthy’ but that is exactly the vibe that I got.
Fresh organically sourced ingredients are on offer adjacent to the counter, and just the glimpse of them makes one feel as if they have completed a park fun-run. The teal interior is calming and complements the light wood panelled tables and indoor plantso; it has the clean and calming aura of a spa without being clinical.
All of the ingredients are seasonal and so the menu may at first seem slightly eclectic, but with this in mind it makes sense. I chose to sample the salads as a starter and the spelt with butternut squash, kale, and pomegranate was fresh and flavourful, as was the pear and walnut salad.
In keeping with my attempted health kick, I chose the cod dish as my main course which came accompanied with beluga lentils and cabbage. It was a generous portion – as a pescetarian I find that several restaurants skimp on their fish portions – well-cooked and flavourful, as were the sides which were appetising in their own right. K’s forest mushroom tagliatelle satisfied her and she commented that sometimes “simple dishes are the best.”
It was refreshing to have an enjoyable meal out without feeling over full. So of course, we decided to sample dessert. We shared a few between us and the Caramel Explosion Cake was, forgive the pun, the bomb. It was just the right consistency with the softness of the chocolate caramel mousse infusing perfectly with the bottom layer. Bizarrely, it didn’t feel too heavy, nor the caramel too sweet – but just the right amount. Perhaps it was the illusion of the décor. The Lemon Meringue Pie was also excellent as the meringue was once again not too sweet and achieved a lovely balance alongside the zest of the lemon and the shortbread base.
Can desserts be healthy? You’d be forgiven for thinking so after a visit to Food Store.
Food Store, 2 Lincoln Plaza, Canary Wharf, London, E14 9BD, England.
Tel: +44 (0)20 7987 1157
Located in the Canary Wharf-based Lincoln Plaza London hotel and a short 5-minute walk from South Quay Tube station. Food Store serves Sunday lunch from 11:30am to 3:00pm. Otherwise, it’s open Monday to Friday from 6:30am to 11:00pm; Saturday and Sunday from 7:00am to 11:00pm.
Type of Restaurant: Bar, Restaurant and Grocer
Price Band: Medium, with Sunday lunch from £25 per head or £45 with free-flowing prosecco of Peroni (available for 2 hours).
Reviewer’s Rating: 8.5/10
Maighna Nanu is a London based freelance journalist.
Photographs courtesy of Food Store