5510 Connecticut Ave. NW. 966-7600.

Hours: Mondays through Saturdays from 11:30 a.m. to 1 a.m.; Sundays from 5 to 11 p.m.

Atmosphere: A bit of English class without a class action against your wallet.

Price range: From children's selections for $2.95 to plain and fancy sandwiches, $3.25 to $5.50, and entrees for $5.25 to $7.75 (or higher for those who live that way on the hog).

Credit cards: American Express, Carte Blanche, Diners Club, Master Charge, visa.

Reservations: It's popular, so at prime time a phone call might spare some grief.

Special facilities: Accessible by wheelchair. Booster seats available. Street parking depends on the phase of the moon, the pollen count and weekend gasoline supplies.

In hop-scotching the culinary worlds of this town from the hockey-puck-hamburger joints to the oo-la-la-skip-the-dessert-kids maisons , we have yet to report to you on any English eating-outing.

'Tisn't teddibly easy, eckshooly.

To begin with, around the world one doesn't find too dedicated a following for English cooking unless one happens to be in England or - we now hasten to note - right in our hometown's own Piccadilly Restaurant.

That's why the four of us began our evening there with an ounce of tropidation, which in Britain is worth about a pound sterling. But our apprehension lasted about as long as a crumpet at high tea, for the setting was warm and the greeting matched it.

Only the gentleman in the suit of armor stood motionless and silent as we bumbled into a rich-looking room of red and black, with book-shelf dividers (one with a handsome stained-glass gothic arch), hurricane lamps, chandeliers, appropriately murky paintings, hunting trumpets and sundry proper doo-dads.

Past the upholstered leatherette benches we went, to a table offering a definite sense of involvement in the kitchen activity - right by the door, in fact. Ah well, the imitation-pewter plates, fresh flowers and pussy willows were cheery and besides, most of the tables really were taken, even at this early evening hour.

Before the children could name soft drinks to match their parents' beer requests, the waitress took command of things with notice that she would bring them "kiddie cocktails." Pink drinks they were and - cheers - freebies.

Again, good show: There is variety on the menu - soups, salads, sandwiches, different curry dishes for each day, seafood, a cold buffet and Piccadilly picks such as mutton chop, steak-and-kidney pie, leg of lamb and on up to the go-for-brokes such as prime ribs and racks of lamb.

First of the successes at our table was the beef and barley soup, 95 cents, which comes with a soda cracker and went with alacrity, for it is excellent. Two orders fast became four.

There are two dinner offerings for the under-12s, and herewith some guidance: "Big Ben," billed as a king-sized beef sausage served with fries and applesauce, $2.95, may not strike a chord with your kid. Our 10-year-old daughter gave it a whirl, but it was the kind of thick, boiled link that's best washed down with a pint or three of Guinness.

The other kid-dish should make better time - a pan-fried burger served in an English muffin, with fries, lettuce and tomato, also $2.95.

Our 12-year-old son was content to waive childhood for a full portion of his favorite British dish, Shepherd's Pie, $5.25. This was fit for the finickiest shepherd - a pleasantly seasoned ground lamb topped with mashed potato and complemented by a Caesar salad with romaine lettuce.

For my wife, it was London Broil $6.75, five rare strips of beef in a mushroom-sherry sauce, with salad and Yorkshire pudding (which, as one of our rookie tasters noted, was much the same as a popover).

My pleasure was an English Chicken Pot Pie, $5.25, an authentically gooey mushroom-and-vegetable sauce with a good chicken-bit-count, all under a flaky, homemade pie crust.

So stoked were we that getting our just desserts would have been sweets revenge - for the treats are anything but low-cal: There was homemade trifle, chocolate mousse and that old English favorite, Black Forest Kirsch Torte (no wonder the menu mentions a "Chef Helmut") and something we'll have to check out next time, called "Piccadilly's Gooseberry Fool."

It was time now for the tally-ho, and a gentle touch it was: $28.26 plus tip. That, for a merry olde time at the groaning board, is jolly good, what?