MissW has been veddy, veddy spoiled. @realcd took me to lunch at the newly opened Cecconi's (in the old Morton's space on Melrose and Robertson, redone, lavishly like an old London restuarant -- turquoise velvet sofa-banquettes, black and white marble floors like a Parisian cafe, elegant glass chandeliers). Food is exquisite. Try the Octopus with Lemon and Olives to start and the Mixed Fish with chopped salad (chopped salad has real, fresh peas in it - so English, so yummy). Blood orange caramel polenta cake for pud and an elegant espresso. Lovely to be out, lovely to bump into old friends, very lucky to have friends that spoil one. Saw Roman C, didn't say hello because wasn't sure how to maneuver around the geography of the tables, but he looked as smart as ever in a crisp, pink shirt. Nick Jones Soho House) knows how to do things the right way. This is a restaurant my father would like -- good food, fine service, properly heavy knives and forks, and a smiley (English) Grand Poobah (Mark Somen) who walks from table to table, filling glasses and being generally charming. The waiters, I'm informed by @realcd, are mostly imported from London. One of ours looked like Ari Emmanuel ("oh tell him, Chris, do tell him" I said, "nooooooo" said Chris "couldn't possibly") and the other looked like a very handsome extra from The Godfather, with slicked back hair, and a quietly urbane demeanor. He told us he was from LA, but I'd never have placed him here. No attitude, no looking over one's head, none of that ridiculousness that one usually experiences in Los Angeles restaurants. First Ramsey, now this; perhaps this Brit influence is a good thing?
Get over the fact that the restaurant sounds a) like it's Madonna's and b) like it stepped out of a mob flick. It's fresh, in every sense of the word.