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Many things in life can be labelled as 'gimmicky'; a useless addition to a product or service that adds no real value or enjoyment, beyond perhaps a fleeting sense of 'what's this for?' However, there are occasions where certain augmentations are not only pleasantly surprising, but serve to enhance a product beyond what you previously thought possible. For this, step forward the Bel Canto restaurant, in the City of London.
Hidden away in a cosy corner of the City, just off Fenchurch Street, The Bel Canto has on offer something much more than a gimmick. Perhaps having noted the thousands of diners rushing to finish their meals each evening throughout London as they strive to get to the theatre or Opera on time, the owners of Bel Canto have decided to bring the opera into the restaurant. That's right: the waiting staff - efficient, friendly and highly-professional - are also trained opera singers, who sporadically burst into song throughout the evening. Now, such an unusual idea could be seen as risky, but the place is heaving most nights, as word spreads that the meal really isn't over until the fat lady sings!
But what will you be eating? The gastronomy at Bel Canto is fabulously French, with a fine set menu at lunch proving a reasonably-priced and filling outlay. Dinner is a particularly enjoyable and raucous affair, with decadent cutlery, a sleek interior décor and exquisite food served with style and professionalism throughout. Diners are urged to sample the lovely foie gras terrine for starters, before devouring perhaps the fresh papardelles pasta and mushroom pesto or the monkfish medallions for main, before finishing with a devilishly delicious dessert.
The wine list at Bel Canto is highly impressive, and sticks true to its French roots, boasting some superb labels and a great cast of champagnes. So, for an unusual, memorable and decedent meal that comes readily garnished with live operatic music, Bel Canto is leading the field of one. Not bad for a tenor, it must be said!