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Eagle Bar Diner

Location: 3-5 Rathbone Place, London. W1T 1HJ. UK. Nearest to Tottenham Court Road station.

A slick spacious venue with dineresque chrome without and a combo of bar style with diner banquettes within, the Eagle Bar Diner really does manage to live up to its hybrid name.

The menu is predominantly cocktails, and changes with the season. Since by definition - if not by perception - we are still in winter, the cocktail menu featured warming drinks: chilli and cinnamon, for example. The juice menu was pleasantly substantial (lychee juice!), and there was a range of milkshakes advertising that they were made with fresh fruit. My pear and cinnamon daiquiri was very nicely balanced and fairly light.

The food menu was more focused, but with admirable variations on set themes. The Eagle offers all-day breakfast, including pancakes and waffles with a variety of toppings. Burger abound: ostrich, emu, bison, turkey, pork, and tuna supplemented the more usual beef and chicken. There were also four or five veggie burger variations. All of the burgers could, in turn, be ordered with a range of toppings. The selection of mains was limited, but side dishes were pleasantly numerous, as were the numbers of available side dips, ranging from garlic mayonnaise to Béarnaise sauce. (I could have had a Béarnaise sauce-topped burger or fries - talk about decadent.)

I ate a substantial beef burger, piled high with lettuce, tomato, onions, garlic mayonnaise, and a scattering of blue cheese, and sided with a rather sweet slice of pickle. The mountain arrived skewered with an atlet a skewer. Fortunately, however tall the burger, it squished down into more feasibly edible heights. The blue cheese was the low point of the meal, for I'd ordered it as an extra. I could see it was there, but couldn't taste a trace of it.

The side of skinny fries were nicely more-ish. I dipped them in a beautifully basil-rich mayonnaise and ate the bowl clean. margotmetroland's chunky chips tasted nicely of potato, while still being entirely cooked. aca opted for the barbecue sauce, which was good, although smoky to an almost medicinal degree; not that I've ever thought of smoke as medicinal before.

Service was unstintingly friendly, if a little slow once the place filled up with the lunchtime crowd. The company - aca, margotmetroland, itsjustaname - was excellent. The cocktail and the basil mayonnaise were the highlights, but really, it was all quite pleasant.