Nopi 22

21-22 Warwick Street , London, W1B 5NE

10 reviews

65 Fusion Mediterranean Soho

  • Nopi
  • Nopi London Shoh restaurant fusion

SquareMeal Review of Nopi

Aimed higher than his eponymous deli/café chain, Yottam Ottolenghi's "gleaming" spin-off hits its target with ease: the cream-coloured ground floor is a serene space artfully decorated with white tiles, polished marble and brass fittings, while downstairs offers large communal tables and an open kitchen. However, readers save most praise for Nopi's "exquisite", "healthy" and supremely tasty food: raw cauliflower is paired with sprouts, nectarines and Gorgonzola, sea trout gets a global makeover with koji rice, watercress pesto and labneh, while beef short-rib keeps more familiar company with smoked beer glaze and horseradish. Whether you're sharing dishes or going it alone with one of the more expensive mains, it's all about creativity and depth of flavour. Signature cocktails also pick up on the kitchen's eclectic ingredients. Some bemoan high prices and petite portions, but most reckon that Nopi is "worth every penny".

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7.0

Food & Drink: 7.5

Service: 7.0

Atmosphere: 6.7

Value: 5.6

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 3.0

Lynn W. platinum reviewer 25 October 2015

We were welcomed to the restaurant and seated upstairs, and a charming waitress brought us water and wine. Crusty sourdough came with good olive oil, and we started with a selection of small plates to share - soft roast aubergine, with black garlic and crunchy toasted broad beans, lightly spiced chickpeas with butternut squash and feta, and hot freshly cooked courgette and manouri fritters with cardamom yoghurt. All these were very good and we tucked in, enjoying the flavours and textures. It's great to have so many choices that happen to be meat free and really good to eat. For the main course we both chose fish - cleverly boned whole seabass stuffed with spring greens and Calabrese peppers, and a buttery lemon sole, with sweet salted grapes and sharp verjus. These were both excellent. But neither of us felt like staying for dessert - the staff were friendly, the food very good, but the white tiles on the wall, hard floors and clattery house music did not make it a place to linger. We both felt it was more like a smart cafe than a restaurant, fine as it is and great if you want to be done and out in about an hour.

Food & Drink: 3.0

Service: 3.0

Atmosphere: 2.0

Value: 2.0

Joey Lo 02 August 2014

I went to Nopi for a friend's birthday meal. Lovely food and gorgeous setting. We were both ill soon afterwards. Nopi wrote back: “We checked all NOPI daily HACCP records from Saturday and we are sure our food, including the fish and scallops served to you and your partner were safe for consumption. All necessary controls were in place, quality and temperature alike. Additionally, during dinner service of your visit to NOPI we served a high number of every single dish you consumed and received no other reports of any adverse reaction. Also if it would have been food poisoning it will take at least 4 to 5 hours before you would react to it. I hope you are feeling better and wish you all the best” Needless to say we won't be returning after such a dismissive response.

Food & Drink: 5.0

Service: 2.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 3.0

Nina K. silver reviewer 02 May 2014

Lovely food, but a bit over priced. The service was so slow our 2 hour slot was up and they kicked us out before we could have pudding.

Food & Drink: 3.0

Service: 3.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 3.0

Monikasays platinum reviewer 05 November 2013

I am a big fan of all things Ottolenghi. I dream about creating his fabulous med inspired rustic dishes in the Guardian, but time and sourcing mysterious ingredients are always a problem. So, I was pleased as punch, when I found out about his latest flashy restaurant in easily accessible Soho. I brought one of my fave girly luncheon partners and off we went. The restaurant itself is glossy in a posh souk way with white tiled walls, eastern golden fittings and a grand display of large white bowls of very attractive salads (posh buffet style). The service was a little sharp, not oozing with family hospitality, which I was for some reason expecting. The good looking menu has small and larger sharing dishes with zingy, mouth watering combinations such as duck with hazelnut butter, roast sweet potatoes with figs and cheese and truffled polenta, yum. We had the twice cooked baby chicken with chilli and salt, which was light, crispy and flavoured with eastern promise. We ordered it twice. The polenta chips were a little solid but there was some fab moreish chilli sauce. All the dishes are vibrant in colour and have a fresh, zesty, light feel, that cleverly whisks one away to that feeling of grazing at a gourmet barbecue in the soaking med sun. Unfortunately, we both had all-consuming colds, so could not fully enjoy the subtle flavouring and wizardry of Yotam. I was slightly underwhelmed, maybe the cuisine is better off in a posh deli rather than a high end, flashy restaurant. Prices are not cheap and add up with extra small dishes. However, I would go again, maybe when my tastebuds are revving up again and the desire for Eastern delights beckons .

Food & Drink: 2.0

Service: 1.0

Atmosphere: 2.0

Value: 1.0

Alice H. 18 October 2013

PLEASE NOTE: the team rectified our problem within a day, I would be happy to re-book!

Food & Drink: 3.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 2.0

OCabrebra 15 June 2013

With a fascinating Fusion-Med menu, the dishes on offer at Nopi are likely to catch the attention of most diners looking to try something out of the ordinary. The starters, more accurately described as gourmet tapas, are hit and miss. Some, like the duck breast with red quinoa and hazelnut beer butter, the scallops with sea spaghetti shiitake, and the baked cod with squid ink are as they should be: short, sweet and delicious. Others, like the twice-cooked baby chicken – dry and disappointing – or the roasted aubergine with burnt butter and tzatziki – remarkably dull in both name and nature and saved only by a few nuts and pomegranate seeds – failed to live up to Nopi’s promise as a distinctive eatery. In contrast to the highly variable starters, the mains were unanimously average. The mushrooms on the side are the best thing about the sirloin steak, which is otherwise lacking in flavour, and, dare I say it, salt. Your critic’s last restaurant meal– a highly recommended and delicious slice of cow at New Street Grill – most likely ruined it for him. The lemon sole with burnt butter and nori is like breakfast from Tuesday three weeks ago: edible, appreciated, but very easily forgotten. Desert was breakfast from Wednesday three weeks ago: like the lemon sole but eaten afterwards. The popcorn ice cream was literally a scoop of (high quality) dairy ice cream with a dozen spicy toffee popped corn kernels served next to it in a side dish. Pleasant, but anticlimactic. The logic behind the choice – it might be an ingenious fusion dish impossible to experience elsewhere and unlike the blackcurrant sorbet, is unavailable in a tub from Waitrose – failed. The lychee Eton mess was better, but the novelty of using an ‘unusual’ tropical fruit did not pack enough of a punch to counter the unforgettable version of the dish on offer at Bibigo, a Korean restaurant in Soho. Some of the starters should be mains and some of the mains are thoroughly middling. Do you get what you pay for? Only if it goes on the company card, which in this case, it did.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 3.0

Value: 3.0

London Gourmet platinum reviewer 01 February 2013

Very laid-back and easy-going atmosphere at this modern Middle-Eastern influenced restaurant (but it's not Middle Eastern in any traditional Kebab type sense at all). Very fresh ingredients and most dishes have a light touch to them. Personal and attentive service.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 3.0

Theodore L. silver reviewer 18 December 2012

Pleasant, casual atmosphere,efficient and helpful staff, very good quality and interesting food! Keep it up!

Food & Drink: 3.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 2.0

BoatLady platinum reviewer 09 June 2012

Like Joey from Friends, I don't like sharing food. But sometimes greediness dictates perversely that you should and this applies in places like NOPI where you are encouraged to order 3 dishes per head, racking up a whopping 12 savouring opportunities if you include dessert (which, of course, you do) when dining in a threesome. There were detailed descriptions from our charming waiter of the efforts taken in the food prep and the subtleties this would impart, but for the most part I found the cooking either heavy handed, like the rather garlicked aubergine and overly spiced gurnard, or underwhelming, as in the case of the Romano peppers which were fine (but £9 worth of fine? No). Cheese stuffed courgette flowers were delicious, but I'm becoming bored of writing that; it has applied to every tapas I've been to recently. Maybe our taste buds were tainted by the frankly unpleasant Riesling from Slovenia (an adventurous mistake I won't repeat again) as once we switched to the much more quaffable Spanish Rioja things started to look up, and we finished the mains with a deliciously salty Presa Iberica. The atmosphere downstairs on the communal tables is great: with the open kitchen at one end and racks of supplies along one side it feels a bit like you're in the kitchen at a chef's house, albeit a house with the most extraordinary toilets you've ever seen (like the Hotel California, it is difficult to leave). I confess I was slightly disappointed with my second visit here, but this could be put down in part to the fact that I was picking up the bill and I didn't feel I'd consumed £255 of gastronomic oomph. We hadn't held back, having between us scoffed 3 cocktails, 9 mains, 3 desserts, 2 bottles of wine, 2 digestifs and a tea; but you won't come out with much change from £50 even if you exercise restraint. Still, I won't let it put me off returning (if nothing else for the delicious financiers dessert). Only next time, we're splitting the bill 3 ways.

Food & Drink: 4.0

Service: 4.0

Atmosphere: 4.0

Value: 3.0

Amy M. bronze reviewer 08 June 2012

We were there early for dinner as we were shooting off for a gig and so had originally booked downstairs at the communal tables. At this time it felt a bit like being on the naughty step and so they were very accomodating and moved us upstairs. Our waitress was fabulous, making the meal even nicer. It is a slight confusing mixture of smallish sharing plates, with sides and mains to choose from. I would recommend the sharing plates to get a taste of everything. This place is especially good if you are a veggie too. Everything we ordered was truly delicious, served at a reasonable pace, so that your meal flowed and we were stuffed by the end of it. Be warned however, 6 plates of vegetarian food and one £30 bottle of wine came to £127 with service, which I do think is a bit steep considering. A lovely place and highly recommended.

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