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This Restaurant In Piccadilly Is London's Best Kept Secret

Hidden beneath tourist blackspot Piccadilly, there is a glittering palace of French cuisine where the prices are as low as the ceiling is high.

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Brasserie Zedel really has to be seen to be believed.

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Piccadilly is a part of town so full of tourist-bait ripoff joints it's hard to believe there's anywhere worth your while there at all. But behind an unpromising ground floor café and down a flight of stairs you'll find yourself in Brasserie Zedel, one of London's best kept budget dining secrets.

You will be greeted with a smile and shown to your seat in the bright, beautiful dining room.

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Smart waiters glide amongst the tables, house bread, butter and water offered free of charge, and to a happy accompaniment of background chatter and clatter you survey the menu.

And yet the prices seem far too low.

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Too low for anywhere in London never mind this palatial space in the heart of tourist London. £2.75 for soup, £9.50 for steak haché and chips, £9.75 for the two-course Prix Fixe of carrottes rapes followed by coq au vin.

It's all stubbornly and self-conciously French but it's far more than a theme restaurant, this isn't Café Rouge. This is French bistro food done properly, but on a budget.

Try the steak.

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If you just went to Zedel for a bowl of soup mopped up with the house bread and washed down with iced water, you could be back out with a bill of a measly £3.10 including service.

But we highly recommend trying that steak haché, best described as a burger without the bun, soaked in a rich peppercorn sauce and served with a cup of fries that stay crunchy to the very last one. And try a glass of Pineau des Charentes, a sweet aperitif from the West of France.

For dessert, get the Ile Flottante.

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A soft meringue floating on a layer of crème anglaise (thin custard) worth every bit of its £3.95. It's a menu that charms with its no-nonsense Gallic simplicity – no fancy ingredients or overwrought cooking techniques, just solid bistro dishes at bargain prices.

It's a hidden gem.

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Owners Corbin & King also own high-end dining institutions the Wolseley and the Delaunay, and their experience in creating a stunning dining environment in those places is certainly evidenced here.

But while the Wolseley is many things, it is not cheap; Zedel is friendly on the wallet in the kind of room, and with the kind of service, that you'd usually pay many times for. It's event dining for the rest of us.

Every week we’ll recommend a new place to eat in London. Let us know in the comments where you think we should feature next!

Previously featured:Apollo Banana Leaf, TootingSilk Road, CamberwellMeatLiquor, SohoTayyabs, Whitechapel
Rebecca Hendin/BuzzFeed

Previously featured:

Apollo Banana Leaf, Tooting

Silk Road, Camberwell

MeatLiquor, Soho

Tayyabs, Whitechapel

BTW, I've just released an app, if you'd like some more recommendations. Where To Eat In London, 2016.