History lesson: um, hello Victorian decadence. This legendary London venue was originally opened in 1874 – it’s Grade II listed and neo-Byzantine, which translates to non-architecture fans as fancy-schmancy, with gilded ceilings, marble floors, mirrored walls and gorgeous arches.
English lesson: for summer, Criterion takes inspiration from the UK “season” – Wimbledon, the Chelsea Flower Show, Ascot and Polo in the Park, with dishes like Lord's chilled cucumber soup with Pimm's sorbet and horseradish and Chelsea lavender panna cotta with elderflower and champagne jelly.
Maths lesson: lunch, pre-theatre and dinners are just £20 for two courses and £25 for three, with a glass of Jacques Cartier Champagne, until the end of June. There’s no such thing as a free lunch, but there is such a thing as a gourmet bargain. The regular menu doesn't break the bank too much either and it's worth a visit just to see star clientele like Kylie Minogue!
Get there: Criterion, 224 Piccadilly, W1. Tel: +44 (0)20 7930 0488. W: criterionrestaurant.com