The Squat

Geeklawyer’s temporary chambers

Restaurant review: The Lion Hotel, Shrewsbury

They arrived at the Lion Hotel courtesy of that most modern manifestation of serendipity: the Travelzoo special offer. Would GL be delivered into a gourmand heaven, or exotic bacteria and a course of powerful antibiotics?

The Lion Hotel has been around since the 16th Century. Its interior seems not to have been radically updated since then: the look and smell evoked vivid nostalgic memories of GL’s old boarding school. Alas that did not bode well for the food: he ascribes his lead lined stomach to the sentient fare found in most public schools of the 60s. Nor was the ambience much better. Granted it was a weekday evening but it felt as though they were in death’s grey waiting room; one of the Four Horsemen was finishing his dessert before laying waste to a Dafur refugee camp. The waiting staff, by contrast, were very helpful and gave the lie to UKIP clowns: god forbid they should have been served by sullen bored Shrewsbury teenagers rather than enthusiastic Poles planning to use their handsome wages to buy a tractor factory in Gdansk. GL thinks that they knew he was a restaurant reviewer because they shoved them into a corner where passing farmers could gawp at them through the windows but where they couldn’t smell the toilets or see what the other diners were eating.

The meal? Ah well, there was a bit of difficulty there. GL is barely remember what he ate. This is generally a blessing in the antechamber to the afterlife; how would you feel being able to remember every day of the 50,000 years spent waiting to pass on to a better place? Not very bloody happy you can be assured. So as a defence the grey cells fade and as the sun sinks below the horizon the day’s memories recede into a warm fuzzy but vague glow. So, GL struggles. The meal was, oh Christ! the adjective bag is empty, erm, O.K. He remembers the Ham Hock starter. He remembers it because these are rarely done well, huge globs of jelly that looks like frozen snail slime drowning some third rate pork left over from yesterday’s £10 All-You-Can-Eat lunch buffet. It was actually good. The main course was fish he thought. At least he assumed so since it was the one that got away and he’s buggered if he remembers it. He thinks his wife was there but he can’t remember that either. It’s the ambience – it’s got a Shining thing going on.

So that’s the Lion Restaurant: once glorious, now fading and waiting to die. A bit like GL’s career, but lets not get all bitter. If you want somewhere to dump a mistress, somewhere private that will swallow up any amount of excess emotion this is it.

The next review GL will remember the food, he swears it, and don’t give a damn if it makes for an old fashioned review.


[edit: changed to the mandatory third person house style . Doh, Facepalm]


April 28, 2014 Posted by | food | , , | 1 Comment

Restaurants: cooking up a review

In restarting his blog one of the things Geeklawyer will be doing less of is the law (being now an ex-barrister); what he’ll be doing much more of is reviews of shit that I really like. And golly does he like eating out and drinking.

How not to do an asshole restaurant review? Hard. Some food critics do reviews that have little to do with the food or the restaurant but are more about the reviewer & their West London social tribe (*cough* AA Gill). Buuuut, if the restaurant really is dull? How does one step on the chef’s meatballs without being thought to do so just for laughs? Chefs are delicate creatures protective of their shells and GL, while being an admitted cunt, doesn’t like to twist the knife too hard.

An additional complication is that GL is now married to a sweet naive girl who has promised conjugal consequences if there is any reoccurrence of old-skool GL behaviour. Honestly, she is worse even than the infamous Ruthie and she refuses to be referred to in reviews as  ‘Er Indoors or The Little Woman pfft.

My first review, of the Lion Hotel in Shrewsbury, will appear shortly. Welcome back

April 18, 2014 Posted by | food | 1 Comment

The blog returns!

Many of you wept inconsolable tears of grief when the old blog shuttered its doors several years ago. This tragedy was forced on GL by necessity: he had his anonymity stripped from him in an egregious abuse of privacy by ne’er do wells in the film industry. His controversial and contrarian scribblings were being used to portray his character in an accurate light. You can imagine how unfortunate that was.

But. He is back. And still in the third person.

The new blog will still engage in ranting but, inevitably, will be less … intemperate, and with less alcohol fuelled rage. Since GL is no longer a practicing lawyer the contents will reflect a more varied life than he had hitherto: film & restaurant reviews, motoring, photography geekery, and pretty much any other ephemera that flits across GL’s horizon.

It may not be possible to resurrect any of the old blog posts from the old site and add them to this site but if it is possible it will be done.



April 15, 2014 Posted by | Uncategorized | | Leave a comment