At the entrance of Brasserie Zédel, just off Piccadilly, there’s a small Parisian style café. While pleasant enough in its own right, it gives little away of the gem that lies beneath. Because it’s what you discover when you descend the stairs that will really take your breath away.
The football pitch-sized basement space – previously the Atlantic Bar And Grill – has been meticulously restored to its art deco glory. And it is simply stunning. As soon as you enter the dining room, you feel instantly transported back to 1930s Paris.
The menu is resolutely old-school French, with some interesting dishes such as choucroute alsacienne. But what struck us most were the prices. Considering the venue, the food and drink are very reasonable. And there’s a great value fixed-price menu.
The central location, relatively low prices and glamorous surroundings draw an eclectic crowd. Which makes it even more interesting for people watching.
There is a strict two-hour service but that’s plenty to soak up the atmosphere, and you can always visit the Bar Americain and Crazy Coqs next door if you want to experience more of the Zédel.
We loved this quote from The Metro... "If Brasserie Zédel were a man, he’d be riding a bicycle, wearing a striped jersey with a string of onions round his neck and a beret on his moustachioed tête. He’d smoke Gauloises and discuss politics and philosophy over endless glasses of pastis."
The Bar Americain is a classic American cocktail bar that serves traditional mixed drinks in the most glamorous, authentic Art Deco surroundings. According to Time Out… "One of the most truly opulent bars in London."
The night we went, we also had tickets for the The Crazy Coqs Cabaret. If the decor doesn’t impress you, the ambience will. The venue is small and very intimate, and again the prices are reasonable (both for admission and drinks).