Fulham's favourite all-night eatery for almost 20 years has opened another branch in Soho – perfect for the late-night clubbing crowd. Serving tasty comfort food to the (often drunk) masses, VQ offers a decent range of dishes that don't break the bank.
Located on the ground floor of the St. Giles Hotel in Bloomsbury, this is an eatery that is perfect for a post-club bite. Forget your local kebab shop and walk past the chicken shop – this is the stylish way to do the after disco gorging. Although not quite up there with similar late-night restaurant Balans in terms of atmosphere or quality, VQ is spacious, with long, wooden tables, benches and brown leather booths, enticing passers-by with its colour-changing VQ sign in the window.
Staff at VQ are friendly; sometimes a little overly so, interrupting your meal a few times to check everything's as 'fine' as it was 30 seconds ago, but the intentions are good. There's a buzz that is no doubt present throughout the night, peaking at around 2am. Tables tend to be filled with groups of rowdy friends at night and families in the morning – the venue's not quite right for romantic meals.
One of the lovely things about VQ is that menus are available all day – whether you fancy a cheeseburger for breakfast or a full fry-up at 2am. The breakfast menu boasts an incredibly tasty bubble'n'squeak with perfectly cooked eggs, crisp bacon and a deliciously creamy hollandaise sauce, a Full English breakfast and bacon or sausage bap, as well as all-American buttermilk pancakes. The lunch menu has all the usual suspects; juicy burgers, hotdogs, a variety of sandwiches and some pretty damn tasty spaghetti meatballs – just the right combination of sauce and meat without drowning the carbs.
When it comes to dinner, don't miss out on the truffled potato chips with blue cheese sauce - they are perfectly baked and bathed in truffle oil to give them an amazing rich flavour, then slathered in creamy, tangy cheese. Other starters include bang bang chicken, marinated olives and breaded red jalapeno peppers filled with cream cheese. When it comes to mains courses, the grilled salmon with hollandaise and spinach is light and flaky – a great option if you're not after anything too filling – while the menu also offers the likes of chicken Milanese and battered fish and chips. The desserts tend to err on the more nostalgic side – think generously portioned ice cream and jelly, Knickerbocker Glory and banoffee pie.
The alcoholic drinks menu at VQ is fairly good; cocktails are pleasant enough but the menu is quite basic and the White Russians could do with a bit of a mix to make sure the ingredients don't curdle. The wine is served by the glass, carafe or bottle, and is pretty decently priced, while Champagnes tend to be on the more expensive side.
Non-alcoholic beverages, however, do better, with some pretty exciting flavours on offer. The honeycomb milkshake and strawberry and honey iced tea are particularly noteworthy, perfect for a lunch accompaniment, and the smoothies go nicely with brunch.
The Last Word
VQ is a pleasant eatery with tasty comfort food, its key USP being its 24 hour availability. Unfortunately, the alcohol licence means drinks can only (!) be served between 8am and 2am, and so people can't carry on their night here. Nevertheless, this is one to try if you're in the area come night or day.