We went to see what this Mayfair newcomer has to offer in terms of private dining and event space
What are the most important elements to any event? Enough food (and good food), enough booze (and good booze), and a good venue. The newly established Rüya London ticks all three.
Let’s start with the food, which is Anatolian. Traditional flavours and much-loved dishes are presented in a fine-dining way, without losing its charm and the atmosphere they bring.
There are a range of menus to choose from for private dining and events, including group feasting menus starting at £65pp and set business lunch menus. We ate from the extensive la carte menu, and while browsing it, we snacked on isli patlican (a smoky, delicious aubergine purée with walnuts, scooped up with crispy coated aubergine chips).
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The cig köfte we had for starters was a novel experience. Described as beef tartare with bulgar and baby gem, it came as a kofta of tartare nestling inside a little case of the lettuce. Packed full of flavour, the dish had thinly sliced radishes on top which added freshness to it to cut through the richness of the meat, and with a squeeze of lemon over it, it was even better.
For mains, we had two different kebab dishes to share with a couple of sides. We went for the Yogurtlu Kebap (lamb and wagyu beef in a rich tomato sauce, roasted garlic yoghurt and crispy crutons) and the Ali Nazik (an adana kebab on smoked aubergine with roasted garlic and yoghurt). The latter was our favourite, but both were tender and deeply flavoursome with the warmth of Middle Eastern spices coming through. Portions are generous and filling, too.
What stood out the most, though, was the quinoa salad side, complete with nuts, grains and a pomegranate dressing. The sweetness and sharpness of the pomegranates matched with the freshness of mint really hit the spot.
Now, onto the booze. It’s been a while since we’ve been presented with a 20-page cocktail menu on arrival. Covering the entire seven regions of the Anatolian landscape, the menu features flavours and specialities from Marmara, the Aegean Sea, Central Anatolia, the Mediterranean, the Black Sea, Southeast Anatolia and East Anatolia.
We thoroughly enjoyed the Rüya negroni, made with Copper Head gin, Turkish coffee-infused antica formula, Campari and tonka bean. The bar also features an extensive whiskey selection, a detailed wine list, and very excitingly, lots of different varieties of Raki (the popular Turkish spirit).
If you’re looking for a fun element for your event or a teambuilding activity before dinner, Rüya also offers cocktail masterclasses. Forget your traditional mojitos here – learn how to infuse the flavours of the former Ottoman empire into your tipple.
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Lastly, but by no means least, let’s talk about the venue. You can hire out the entire restaurant for a large-scale event, if you want. With a 250-person standing capacity, a reception with awesome cocktails and filling bar snacks would work a treat. Likewise, you can seat up to 110 for dinner.
In terms of private dining, there is a semi-private room, which allows you to enjoy a bit of hustle and bustle in the background. It seats up to 14, but you can opt for a reception here too, with a 25-person capacity.