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50a Berkeley Street
This slick, flashy gastro-complex from Russian restaurant guru Arkady Novikov is best-known for its swanky Asian Restaurant, although the venue also includes an off-radar Italian eatery done out in more subdued style with oak-framed mirrors, handmade tiles and piazza-style trees in pots. The kitchen deals in upmarket trattoria food, including a host of antipasti ranging from a trio of smoked fish with fennel, prunes and lemon to classic vitello tonnato gussied-up with black truffle. After that, order pasta (tagliatelle with ceps or conchiglie with hare ragù and black cabbage) or trade up to something from the Josper grill or imposing wood-fired oven – perhaps beef tagliata or baby chicken with salmoriglio sauce. And if the place is “rammed to the hilt”, you can now eat in the downstairs bar from a menu of dishes taken from both restaurants.
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50a Berkeley Street
020 7399 4330
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Food & Drink:
Rate & Review
Food + drink: 3
I visited Novikov a few weeks ago with a friend of mine to celebrate my birthday. We had made a booking a few days ago because it was a restaurant suggested by friends and having visited Rextail the week prior, I expected to have a delightful experience. Before I start, I will say the food was delicious, despite the portions being absolutely tiny and not quite enough to fill a grown man.
On arriving, we were taken to a seat with our coats still on; no one had offered to take our coats to the cloakroom and I actually had to ask if the restaurant even had a cloakroom.
Secondly, I would like to mention that when we were booking, we mentioned that we had specific dietary requirements and the person on the phone assured us that they requirements would be met. On arriving, we decided to double check just to be sure and this time, we were told that our dietary requirements could not be catered to, essentially restricting us to two meat options on the entire menu.
Anyway, we did decide to go ahead and order what we could, despite having thoughts of walking out at that point. The waitress who was serving us seemed extremely grumpy and did not seem like someone who wanted to be at the job.
There were tiny details as well that were ignored. For example, upon arriving, no one took the effort to pull the chairs out or place the napkin in place or even smile. Throughout the entire meal, we had to fill our glasses ourselves and when the jug was empty, no one came to refill it. The one point we were asked if the meal was okay was once we had finished everything and the waitress arrived to take the meal away. I understand a lot of these details are tiny, but for a restaurant in Mayfair, the bar is set extremely high and the prices we pay for the food and service need to be justified too.
On finishing our meal, although my friend mentioned during the reservation that the meal is for a birthday, there was no sign of the staff knowing anything about this.
It was an extremely disappointing experience for me and it is such a letdown for a birthday experience and on the way back, my friend who was treating me felt extremely embarrassed having taken me to what she proclaimed was one of the worst restaurant experiences in her life.
On e-mailing the manager with a complaint, after one e-mail, she has also not bothered to reply back, which shows that on principle, this is not a restaurant worth visiting.
Food + drink: 1
Yesterday I had a lunch with my friend in Novikov Italian restaurant. The atmosphere is nice and we were greeted by friendly members of staff. We had nice starter, we enjoyed it. The taste was good and service was quick. For the main I ordered lamb cutlets. Lamb is my favorite meat I eat it quit often. So when they delivered it I felt strange smell coming from meat, but thought may be its source or the way they cook. The moment I had a peace in the mouth it became obvious that the lamb was off. It was not about that it cooked not nice the lamb was just OFF. I sent it back to the kitchen and ordered fish instead. What surprised me the most that after servicing the food that could cause the food poison not any single member of staff said even sorry, not offering anything complimentary or just asking how they can apologize. It was not about not to pay the bill or to get anything for free but to have nice customer service. I am very disappointing, will not go there any more. It is big shame as in Moscow this restaurant is very popular and service is immaculate there. Mr Novikov pays much attention to his place so very shame that staff in London branch is so poor
Food + drink: 4
In hindsight would have gone with the set menu.
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