SquareMeal Review of
Kiwi chef Jeff Tyler used to be head chef of the Asian side of flashy mega restaurant Novikov, so it’s a complete surprise that his first solo project is a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it corner spot in olde worlde Shepherd Market, with space for only 15 diners (tables are bookable). What isn’t a surprise is how good the modern Japanese food is. Titu is billed as a gyoza specialist, though there’s much more to the small-plates menu than dumplings: meltingly soft tuna blobbed with a subtle jalapeno mayo and dressed with an artful frill of salad leaves, deep-fried chicken popcorn that eats like a gourmet McNugget, or a citrusy salad of chunky soft-shell crab. The dumplings themselves are served linked like conjoined twins attached by a filigree of lacy batter; we preferred the warmly spiced chicken and foie gras version to Wagyu gyoza that seemed like an ostentatious intrusion from Novikov.
Prices, while not exactly cheap, are something of a bargain for Mayfair given the quality of the ingredients and cooking. And while the tiny dimensions mean this is not somewhere to come to discuss anything remotely confidential, the charming staff somehow find space to mix the likes of Pisco Sours and Espresso Martinis. We’ll definitely be back – perhaps after a matinee at the nearby Curzon Mayfair.
Titu is recommended for