Reubens in London has been pretty much part of the kosher eating scene for well over 30 years.
Previously located halfway down Baker Street in London's West End, this tourist and cab driver's favourite moved to the top end of the street in the late 90s. The move also saw it expand into larger premises.
Everything you could expect from a traditional heimische Jewish eaterie is here, from chopped liver and soup starters to mains of salt beef, stuffed cabbage and steak. While of course for afters it's parev sorbet and lokshen pudding.
While Reubens experiments with some non-traditional fayre, such as grilled kebabs and chicken milan (chicken schnitzel on top of a plate of spaghetti and tomato sauce), for the most part it's the traditional food that scores well, and provides a hearty meal.
Chicken soup, at £3.45, offers not just three medium-sized matzo balls but can also be served with noodles at no extra charge. It's delicious, tasting like real traditional chicken soup, though some actual chicken pieces (and maybe even a bit of carrot) would make it even better.
We followed this with a plate of salt beef and some rye bread. A salt beef sandwich on its own will set you back £6, but if there's two of you then a plate of salt beef for £9.95, with at least four slices of bread, makes for a good meal.
Reubens trimmed the fat from the brisket, offering lean meat, seasoned just right. Not too salty, nor too heavily spiced, the plate is enough for two people, especially those who have a starter beforehand.
We avoided a latke which is £2, although these are also recommended. But as we wanted dessert and were getting full up, we decided to avoid this potato dish.
At £2.95, a slice of Reuben's lokshen pudding is heaven. It's heavy, stodgy and delicious – everything you want from this Eastern European dessert. Made from noodles and baked with sultanas, it's perfect both hot or cold, although we had it cold.
On Reubens ground level, it's self-serve, while for an extra pound or so, you can have full table service at the restaurant downstairs. If you're looking for something fast and good, then ground level is for you. Also, Reubens does not offer any facilities for those disabled who need to get downstairs – its toilets are also located downstairs.
If you're looking for simple kosher food that's centrally located in London and easy on the pocket, then Reubens is for you.
For more information: Reubens, 79 Baker Street, London W1U 6RG
Tel no: 020 7486 0035