Critic review roundup of the week – 14th February 2020

From the likes of Fay Maschler’s wise words and Grace Dent’s fiery tongue to Jay Rayner’s cheek, we’ve got a round up of where some of the top London food critics are eating this week and what they have to say about it. We know they certainly won’t mince their words.

Fay Maschler

Book Davies & Brook

Honey and lavender-glazed duck with beetroot at Davies & Brook
Image source: Matt Writtle at the Evening Standard

Revered Maschler sings the praises of Claridge’s latest restaurant, Davies & Brook. The Daniel Humm outpost in Mayfair offers a British-inspired menu with global twists. In the elegant dining room, Maschler states that the effort that went into it is “worth it”, describing how the “velvet banquettes shimmer in chivalrous lighting that obliges food and customer alike”. Fay Maschler highlights the 4-course menu, commending the signature dry-aged duck, saying “the meat was perfect” and mentioning the “irresistible bread rolls with the texture of croissant” and its unique gel-topped butter.

 

Tanya Gold

Book Wild Honey St James

Wild Honey St James

Titling her piece “The food is almost too superb” speaks volumes of Tanya Gold‘s opinions on Wild Honey. The Michelin Plate-awarded brasserie boasts a chic grand hotel design with blue velvet banquettes and plenty of  bright lights up above. Describing each dish as “all careful, pretty and loved”, the “fierce” Italian menu by Anthony Demetre offers sumptuous dishes that leave Gold with this: “We have reached a pitch of excellence in cuisine in London.”

 

Grace Dent

Neither Black nor White at Muse by Tom Aikens
Image Source: Grace Dent at The Guardian

Tom Aikens’ new intimate haunt in Belgravia offers a lavish dining experience of 10 courses, filled with plenty of theatrics that makes dining there feel “like being part of 10 courses of delicious talking therapy”. Grace Dent describes Muse as pretentious, but positively so, being “wilfully weird and wholly unique”, while highlighting the Neither Black nor White dish as a “glorious riff on cauliflower panna cotta” with its cauliflower ice-cream, pickled gold raisins and caviar.

 

Andy Hayler

Book TOKii and The Malt Lounge

Grilled aubergine at TOKii and The Malt Lounge
Image Source: Andy Hayler

Fine dining Japanese-style with a Euro-fusion twist is TOKii and The Malt Lounge. Within the Prince Akatoki Hotel, diners at TOKii can enjoy rare whiskies and Japanese teas while sampling sushi, robata grills and delicate Asian dishes, with prices described by Andy Hayler as “quite fair”. Chosen items included the prawn tempura with a ginger and daikon dashi sauce, which was celebrated with its batter being “light and clean and the prawns carefully cooked”, while the tuna sushi had a “pleasingly velvety texture”. All in all, Hayler ended by saying “the menu was appealing to me and the skill level in the kitchen was quite high throughout the meal.”

 

Jimi Famurewa

Pumpkin with cod at The Yard
Image source: Jimi Famurewa at the Evening Standard

After dining at The Yard at Great Scotland Yard Hotel, Famurewa rates the menu 4 out of 5, while is not a fan of the interior design.  Stand-out dishes included the slow-cooked pork jowl that claimed to be “glistening softness, speckled with a crackled crumb”, and there was the “flawlessly rosy” fallow deer, served with a hunter’s pie and luminescent green mashed potato. Famurewa’s final thoughts bolster the Yard’s offering, celebrating its “Uncommon verve, attentiveness and generosity of spirit that blazes through, even in slightly overwrought surroundings.”

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