Where shall we meet in the City?

As the Eighties fade into distant memory, lunch, or at least Lunch Lite, the lo-cal, lo-alcohol alternative, is coming back to the City. Which is good news for restaurateurs - after all, the square mile concentrates high-income punters for the duration of the week. So the area has become a prime spot for openings, and Harvey Nicks has followed suit.

Their new outlet, Prism, opened on 26 April. Appropriately, the restaurant is in the converted premises of the Bank of New York, an elegant space with wonderful acoustics that allows people to discuss their finances in loud voices without sharing them with everyone else.

There's a lovely, warm style bar in the basement with moleskin leather banquettes, an adventurous array of cocktails and a pleasantly un-braying feel. If there's a criticism to be made, it's that the whole place has been geared to feeding people in the lunchtime rush and doesn't slow down in the evening: it can be quite startling to get your starter before you've had a chance to drink more than a couple of sips of wine.

Chef Simon Shaw (above) has come down from the Fourth Floor in Leeds, and seems to be enjoying the transition. Starters at pounds 6.50-pounds 12.50 and mains at pounds 9.50-pounds 14.50 cover a good range of flavours. A tempura of Whitby cod with pea puree was a clever twist, and a croustade of mushroom duxelle had a lovely runny poached egg to mash into the pastry. There's sausage and mash for the diehard blokes in your party (Jeremy Clarkson was in when we were), but we had peppered haddock and brandade cake with mustard seed sauce, and a cheering combination of seared scallops with Chinese duck dumpling, chilli and soy. All very light, wholesome and energy-promoting. Fortunately, as you would expect from a Northern chef, the chips we had on the side were excellent.

Prism, 147 Leadenhall St, London EC3 (0171-256 3888)

SQUARE-MILE

LITE

Alba 107 Whitecross St, London EC1 (0171-588 1798)

Suan Neo 31 Broadgate Circle, London EC2 (0171-256 5044)

Cantina del Ponte Butlers Wharf Building, 36c Shad Thames, London SE1 (0171-403 5403)

Arts and Entertainment

Great British Bake Off
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment

ebooksNow available in paperback
Arts and Entertainment

ebooks
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    The long walk west: they fled war in Syria, only to get held up in Hungary – now hundreds of refugees have set off on foot for Austria

    They fled war in Syria...

    ...only to get stuck and sidetracked in Hungary
    From The Prisoner to Mad Men, elaborate title sequences are one of the keys to a great TV series

    Title sequences: From The Prisoner to Mad Men

    Elaborate title sequences are one of the keys to a great TV series. But why does the art form have such a chequered history?
    Giorgio Armani Beauty's fabric-inspired foundations: Get back to basics this autumn

    Giorgio Armani Beauty's foundations

    Sumptuous fabrics meet luscious cosmetics for this elegant look
    From stowaways to Operation Stack: Life in a transcontinental lorry cab

    Life from the inside of a trucker's cab

    From stowaways to Operation Stack, it's a challenging time to be a trucker heading to and from the Continent
    Kelis interview: The songwriter and sauce-maker on cooking for Pharrell and crying over potatoes

    Kelis interview

    The singer and sauce-maker on cooking for Pharrell
    Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

    Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

    But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
    Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

    Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

    Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
    Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

    Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

    Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
    Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

    Britain's 24-hour culture

    With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
    Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

    The addictive nature of Diplomacy

    Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
    Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

    Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

    Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
    8 best children's clocks

    Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

    Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
    Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

    Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

    After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
    Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

    How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

    Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
    Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

    'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

    In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea