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20 Savile Row
020 7534 7000
Time moves relatively slowly when it comes to Mayfair’s classic restaurants, and Sartoria’s thorough refurb (along with the arrival of chef/patron Francesco Mazzei from L’Anima) is still news on Savile Row. The place now looks pin-sharp, of course, if a little stately with its heavy furniture and hotel-neutral palette – although Mazzei’s emphatically “wonderful” cooking elevates the experience to something approaching “faultless”, with back-up from an “incredible” wine list. He’s not afraid of simplicity, stuffing romanesco peppers with salt cod or pairing brown and white crab with green apple and pickled radish. Like his well-dressed patrons, he’s not averse to the luxurious, either: try Grana Padano risotto with saffron and duck livers, generous veal milanese for two, or slow-roasted Black Pig belly with pickled vegetables and black pudding. To finish, insist on zabaglione – think of it as keeping a craft skill alive, not drinking a bowl of expensive custard. Meanwhile, in the late-licence bar, it’s snacks and Negronis a go-go.
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SquareMeal 3 Stars
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From: 04 June 2018
To: 01 December 2018
Enjoy our set lunch menu every week day in the Restaurant. 2/3 courses from £26.50/£32.50
Look for the "£" icon when booking (offers only available on certain days/times)
20 Savile Row
020 7534 7000
Oxford Circus Tube Station 422m
Piccadilly Circus Tube Station 480m
Savile Row 37m
Regent Street 75m
Mon-Fri 7-11am 12N-11pm Sat 11am-11pm
Sartoria in Mayfair boasts two spacious private dining rooms. Connected to the restaurant by large oak-panelled sliding doors, they can be left open to enjoy the theatre of the restaurant or closed for privacy. The sleek design includes fabric walls and creates the perfect ambience in which to entertain guests. Each room can comfortably cater for up to 25 guests for a seated dinner, or 35 for a standing reception. For larger parties the rooms can be joined together to seat up to 50 guests or 70 guests standing. Surround yourself with some of Italy’s finest wines in the third private dining room, situated in a newly built wine cellar. Hosting up to eight guests, the room is a stunning setting for more intimate groups who desire a thoroughly tailored experience.
Food & Drink:
Rate & Review
Food + drink: 5
Since the reincarnation, this restaurant impresses consistently. I've only been for business lunches for which the service is efficient and the spacing means you're not overheard. But the food has been a pleasant surprise on all three occasions.
Food + drink: 3
Given that the French Guide Michelin has had the courage to award 54 new stars in its 2016 edition, it is encouraging that UK chefs are continuing to work towards ever higher standards knowing that it is unlikely that their efforts will affect the increasingly negative and increasingly unjustifiable ratio of stars between the UK and France, even though, whatever The Sunday Times may say, there are precious few chefs in this country who would actually refuse a star or two or three. So, should Francesco Mazzei bother? Sartoria is difficult to judge in some respects; it copes with a very sizeable number of covers, split between the cavernous main dining room, which almost has the look of canteen, and this certainly contributes to some lack of ambience, and three private dining rooms. However, the canny lay-out of the tables and the, in most cases, relaxed efficiency of the front of house staff, does make it feel like it should be a fine-dining restaurant. There is no permanent tasting menu, but we were lucky enough to be offered a special Valentine’s Day set menu. Another factor working in favour of fine-dining status is the excellent wine list, especially, as you would expect, the superb selection of Italian beauties, but also a decent choice of wines by the glass and half bottles. So does the food swing it? To go with our Prosecco some bread was served with some olive oil but without any descriptive detail, and no amuse-bouche was forthcoming, so, having persuaded our waiter to persuade the kitchen to change the menu main course from beef to the dish people, and food critics, are talking about, namely cod marinated in liquorice, and having chosen a suitable bottle for the three seafood-based courses, we plunged into the first course. We do sometimes wonder how many hand divers there are under the sea at any one time, but we happily paired the charcoal-topped hand-dived scallop with the fiery ‘nduja, the latter taken with the purple potato mash being a good match rather than a dominant feature, and as the palate became accustomed to the spice the lovely prawn, allowed to be perfectly natural, came into its own. The second course was a bit of a puzzle; the lobster in the ravioli would have been far more obvious if it had not been minced up and in the end it was rather neutral, and as the accompanying truffle was on the same sort of innocuous level on the flavour scale this was not a dish to write home about. It was a cautious thumbs up though for the almost too generous serving of cod cured in liquorice, the yummy richness of which was cunningly counterbalanced with a slightly vinegary beetroot coulis and complemented by a small portion of mash, some trendy singed lettuce and a potato crisp for texture. The dessert brought the meal to a close with a bit of theatre, the cupolone chocolate dome being coaxed into collapsing by the hot chocolate poured on it to reveal inside a light hazelnut cakey mousse and a dash of sweetish sauce with a suggestion of alcohol. Overall, then, we reckoned that one or two tweaks are still needed for Sartoria to start offering a proper challenge to the many other established toppers in Mayfair.
Food + drink: 4
We arrived for dinner and had drinks in the bar first - a glossy space, welcoming and a good spot for a catch up. Moving into the dining room, we all liked the wing back chairs and comfortable environment, and settled in for a good dinner with lovely copper pots of breads and fab olive oil. Actually, it was a bit patchy. The winter salad with crunchy raw veg, soft puree of pulses and quails egg was enjoyable, the tortellini with Marsala broth was said to be very good, and the seafood with Sardinian fregola was apparently epic! Wish I'd had that ... For main course a friend and I shared the salt baked sea bass, this was good fish, delivered whole to the table but spoiled a little by rather unskilled service, it ended up as a bit of a heap on the plate. The lamb looked very good, but was apparently not a good piece and was too fatty and chewy, while the fritto misto was rapidly polished off. Sides of ultra-thin crispy fried zucchini and double baked potatoes with mozarella were delicious, but the spinach was more like tough chewy chard. For dessert 3 of us succumbed to the thought of chestnut and meringue montebianco, but none of us finished it - the meringue was nice and crisp but flat, the filling a bit claggy - overall just too sweet and stodgy and not the luscious rich but airy confection we were expecting. One person chose the roast pineapple and was very pleased with it. Service was very pleasant but there were long waits between courses. Overall we had a good evening, but given we have been to L'Anima several times for chef Franceso Mazzei's cooking we came away feeling that some dishes were very good but others were disappointing.
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