Former car showroom named London's best new restaurant

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A smart new celebrity-spotting venue in Mayfair and a family-oriented café attached to an urban farm in Hackney have been recognised as two of the best restaurants London.

A smart new celebrity-spotting venue in Mayfair and a family-oriented café attached to an urban farm in Hackney have been recognised as two of the best restaurants London.

The Wolseley, housed in a former car showroom in Piccadilly and the latest venue of choice for glitterati such as Kate Moss, Sir Michael Caine and Sir Elton John, has been named London's best new restaurant in the Time Out restaurant awards for 2004.

The magazine praises its style - conceived as a homage to the grand cafés of pre-war middle Europe - and determinedly traditional food of the era such as oysters, wiener schnitzel and steak au poivre, which, it says, are "immaculately executed and delivered with panache".

The Wolseley is the latest brainchild of Jeremy King and Chris Corbin, the duo behind The Ivy, which had celebrities flocking to sample its traditional English dishes such as fish cakes and shepherd's pie.

Other new restaurants singled out by Time Out included Tom Aikens, named after its chef, which has already won high praise, and Sir Terence Conran's Plateau, situated amid the skyscrapers of Canary Wharf in London's Docklands.

At the other end of the social and culinary spectrum, the Time Out awards also highlight the Italian-run Frizzante Café at the City Farm in Hackney as the best family restaurant in London. Meals are eaten with the sounds of the farm's animals as a backing track and in an atmosphere described as "community-centre-ish".

The magazine praises its chicken skewers with fried potatoes, all-day breakfasts, home-made pizzas and gnocchi and pasta sauces, as a result of which, Time Out warns, it is almost impossible to get a table at Sunday lunchtimes.

The chain of Wagamama noodle bars, which offer communal bench-style eating with "perky staff and wholesome menus" are also among the capital's child-friendly restaurants selected for praise.

Other winners include: Milk and Honey, a reservation - or members-only bar - in Soho, which wins the award for best bar; the cutting-edge Shoreditch venue Loungelover, which wins the award for best designed venue; and the Michelin-starred Hakkasan, which is named as the best Chinese restaurant in London.

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