Nestled beneath The Ampersand Hotel, Apero is a buzzy all-day basement brasserie standing out in this superior south Ken spot. Its eclectic interior, as you first walk in, is lined with Mediterranean trinkets and retro curios ahead of the white-brick vaulted cellars of the boutique-style cavern. Descending the sweeping staircase, Apero instantly invites with its snug booth corners cosily lit by candles and cloaked by velveteen turquoise curtains, and the cosmopolitan food, merging Mediterranean and Italian morsels, is designed to be shared. And that’s just what we did with the generous 5-course sharing menu for London Restaurant Festival.
To start, we shared the mild and creamy burrata with beetroot purée and flame-coloured beetroot was a fresh and clean dish, and some seasoning would have lifted the fresh, earthy flavours even further.
We thought that the truffle risotto could have fed a family of four: calling this a generous portion was an understatement! Truffle shavings and flavoursome wild mushrooms interspersed the goo of the rice mixture.
Beefy ribeye steak packed lots of flavour, with a gamey taste, similar to a classic French bavette steak. A deep red wine jus added real depth, alongside some polenta mash.
This dessert was one you would definitely not choose to share, but mercifully we didn’t have to, as we had a serving each. Salted caramel macaroon paled into salty insignificance next to the magnificent caramel tart. With a burnished butterscotch taste, this delectable dessert was the best thing about the meal and worth a visit to Apero alone for this. We were surprised that the cheese arrived at the same time as the dessert, but we glossed over the pungent aroma and ploughed on through the incredible caramel tart.
Manchego was the favourite pick of the cheese selection alongside a ripe wedge of brie, and some deliciously crunchy biscuits. There was some extremely ripe stilton, while a wine reduction jelly and tangy apple slices added tartness.
A journey through modern edgy European cuisine, the menu at Apero offers up some interesting creations to be sampled, courtesy of London Restaurant Festival. Apero Restaurant takes its moniker from the hour before dinner where Italians tipple over an aperitif, which is just the ticket if you want to enjoy some of the bespoke cocktails at the bar before indulging in a Mediterranean tasting journey with a difference.
You can book the Apero London Restaurant Festival menu now, for dining dates until 27th October.
10 Harrington Road, London, SW7 3ER