Completely forgot to tell you. Here goes. Virulent vilification of victuals.
Actually that's not exactly true - the food was fine, even 'nice' (though the distinctions between 'medium' and 'medium rare' seemed to elude them... but now I sound snobbish...) but you could only really appreciate the 'niceness' of said fuel if you were prepared to wait an hour and a half for it.
It was a full a hour and a half before the main course was served. And with 4 kids down one end of the table, really rather hungry, it wasn't a pleasant experience for parents.
I have been to Bertorelli's several times before, and each time the service has been appalling. Dreadfully slow, entirely unapologetic, the staff always assured us it was 'just coming'.
It very clearly was not.
And this time they gave us the bill before serving the ice cream (which we had naïvely assumed had arrived, been consumed, and left). Ice cream was then served at presumably what they call 'double-time' but the rest of the sane, time-keeping world calls it 'unrepentingly sluggish', and it had to be gulped down by the desperate children as we put on their hats, coats, scarves and gloves.
So if you're anywhere near St Martin's Lane, whether to visit Trafalgar Square, the National Portrait Gallery, the ENO or any of the surrounding theatres, don't bother the green-painted, silver-studded door of Bertorelli's. Or, if you still want to go, leave at least three hours for your meal. And don't count on ice cream. You may have to forsake it.
Sorry. Rant over.