Bentley's Oyster Bar & Grill

British, Fish·
££££
·
Gold Award
·

SquareMeal Review of Bentley's Oyster Bar & Grill

Gold Award

More than a century down the line, Bentley’s still offers “the freshest oysters in London” with all the conviviality you’d expect of a restaurant owned by Richard Corrigan. Downstairs, shuckers get through Carlingford, Jersey and West Mersea bivalves like they’re going out of fashion, with support from celebratory seashore platters, fish and chips and even a sushi salad bowl. Things are noticeably less hectic in the upstairs grill, where punters have time to anticipate and savour sea bass carpaccio with langoustine and lime, ‘royal’ fish pie or grilled sirloin of Irish Hereford beef with salted bone marrow and black pepper onions. Dessert could be a seasonal trifle or a tropical arrangement of pineapple, mango, chilli, ginger and coconut, while the wine list matches these fulsome flavours with plenty by the glass and a global outlook among the bottles. When it comes to the bill, “Corrigan knows how to charge, but can be excused given the overall quality,” says one regular.

Good to know

Average Price
££££ - Over £80
Cuisines
British, Fish
Ambience
Fine dining, Glamorous, Quiet conversation, Traditional
Food Occasions
All day dining, Dinner, Lunch
Alfresco And Views
Outside seating, Terrace
Special Features
Counter dining, Vegetarian options
People
Celeb spotting, Dates, Special occasions
Food Hygiene Rating

About

A true seafood institution, Bentley’s needs little introduction. Serving up the freshest seafood around for over 100 years will often have that effect. Headed up by Michelin-starred chef Richard Corrigan for more than a decade, Bentley’s shows no sign of slowing down. This is a restaurant where diners feel relaxed, but every detail has been examined before anything leaves the kitchen. Specialising in not just oysters but all seafood, this is widely considered one of the best places to enjoy the fruits of the sea in the UK.

An essential start to a meal at Bentley’s is, of course, oysters. Here there are over ten varieties to choose from, available individually or by the half dozen. Purists can enjoy theirs as nature intended, while those seeking something more flavoured can opt for theirs dressed or garlic-baked. Oscietra, Cornish and Iranian Beluga caviar is available for those wishing to go all-out for their meal.

From the raw bar, the delights of the sea continue with options like langoustine with ponzu and pink grapefruit or cherry clam with tomato and horseradish. Classic dishes like shellfish cocktails are elevated to new heights here, featuring Cornish crab, Atlantic prawns, lobster and brown shrimp. Starters include further elevated dishes like lobster bisque with brandy and tarragon chantilly or Cornish crab and mussel soup with coconut, ginger and lime.

Those wanting something more relaxed for their main course can enjoy classic fish and chips with tartare sauce and mushy peas or fish pie. However, the decadence continues with options like pan-seared turbot with olive oil mash and langoustine sauce. Meat dishes like a herb-crusted rack of lamb are also available, but seafood is certainly the main event here.

There is an extensive list of wines by the glass as well as bottle so that the ideal accompaniment for each course can be chosen. There are plenty of sparkling options as well as larger bottles for extravagant celebrations.

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Menu Highlights

Starters
Cornish Crab and Mussel Soup - £15.50

Cornish Crab, Mussels, Coconut, Ginger and Lime

Rooftop Smoked Salmon - £19.50

Bentley's Rooftop Smoked Salmon, Potato Blinis, Horseradish

Bentley's Shellfish Cocktail - £29.50

Cornish Crab, Atlantic Prawns, Lobster, Brown Shrimp

Cornish Dressed Crab - £28.50

Served in the half-shell

Royal Shellfish Platter - £100.00

Half Lobster, Dressed Crab, Prawns, Oysters, Mussels, Whelks

Main Courses
Classic Fish Pie - £28.50

Haddock, Prawn and Salmon, topped with creamy mashed potato

Pan-Seared Turbot - £49.50

Served with Olive Oil Mash, Langoustine Sauce

Cornish Fish Stew - £29.00

Served with Rouille and Aioli

Lobster Spaghetti - £39.00

Tomato and Basil

Dover Sole Meunière - £64.00

Brown Butter, Lemon, Caper


FAQs

What is the menu like?

As the name suggests, the menu has a strong seafood focus, including oysters. You’ll have the choice between native, rock and dressed oysters to start (or as a main if you’re a big fan), before moving on to a whole host of other seafood dishes. Mains include classics like native lobster, Dover sole or a classic fish pie.

Helpful? 2

Who owns the restaurant?

Celebrity chef Richard Corrigan owns it. The chef also heads up Dickie’s Bar and Corrigan’s in Mayfair, Daffodil Mulligan in Old Street, and Virginia Lodge in Ireland.

Helpful? 2

Is there a terrace?

Yes, there’s a terrace which allows guests to dine alfresco. Heaters and umbrellas ensure comfort whatever the weather.

Helpful? 2

Can you book at Bentley's Oyster Bar & Grill?

We take online reservations for up to 8 guests, and you can reserve your table on our website. We hold a number of tables daily for walk-ins if there is no availability online. For larger groups or private dining, please get in touch with our events team on +44 (0)20 7734 4756.

Helpful? 0

What is the dress code at Bentley's Oyster Bar & Grill?

Our dress code is smart-casual.

Helpful? 0

What is the ambience at Bentley's Oyster Bar & Grill?

Each area of Bentley's Oyster Bar & Grill enjoys a different atmosphere. Our upstairs Rib and Grill dining rooms offer a more formal ambience, with linen table cloths and silver service. On the Oyster Bar, find a buzzier environment where our oyster shuckers can offer tips, tricks and answer any questions you may have. On the Swallow Street terrace, escape from the hustle and bustle of Regent Street as you sip Champagne and Oysters! Please contact our team if you have any questions about our spaces.

Helpful? 0

Does Bentley's Oyster Bar & Grill offer gluten-free options?

Bentley's Oyster Bar and Grill can cater to all dietary requirements. Please advise us of any specifications when making your booking or seating at your table.

Helpful? 0

Bentley's Oyster Bar & Grill is featured in

This venue also offers

Bentley's
Christmas Parties

Bentley's

Bentley's Restaurant
Private Group Dining

Bentley's Restaurant

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Location

11-15 Swallow Street , Mayfair, London, W1B 4DG

020 7734 4756 020 7734 4756

Website

Opening Times

Lunch
Mon 12:00-15:45
Tue 12:00-15:45
Wed 12:00-15:45
Thu 12:00-15:45
Fri 12:00-15:45
Sat 12:00-15:45
Sun 12:00-15:45
Dinner
Mon 17:00-21:30
Tue 17:00-21:30
Wed 17:00-21:30
Thu 17:00-21:30
Fri 17:00-21:30
Sat 17:00-21:30
Sun 17:00-21:30

Reviews

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35 Reviews 
Food/Drink
Service
Atmosphere
Value

Anon

23 December 2022  
Food & Drink 5
Service 5
Atmosphere 5
Value 5

The best restaurant in London purely because they consistently serve the finest food with the best wines complemented by the friendliest and professional service in a wonderful atmosphere and 1st class environment.....

Anon

08 December 2022  
Food & Drink 5
Service 5
Atmosphere 5
Value 5

I love visiting Bentley's. It's relaxed & not pretentious. The food & staff are excellent.

Anon

08 December 2022  
Food & Drink 5
Service 5
Atmosphere 5
Value 5

I love visiting Bentley's. It's relaxed & not pretentious. The food & staff are excellent.

Simon B

07 December 2022  
Food & Drink 5
Service 5
Atmosphere 5
Value 5

Superb fish, ideal location and lively venue.

Belinda J

04 December 2022  
Food & Drink 5
Service 5
Atmosphere 5
Value 5

Great soup and seafood with good service

Sarah H

24 November 2022  
Food & Drink 5
Service 5
Atmosphere 5
Value 5

Just simply the best crab in town. A beautiful menu full of wonderful fish dishes make this one of the best restaurants in London, and everything Richard Corrigan does if perfection! Love this resturant!

Sofie L

14 March 2022  
Food & Drink 4
Service 4
Atmosphere 4
Value 3
Really nice but overall relatively expensive for what you get.

The service was really good and the atmosphere was very nice. The food was tasty and the wine menu was really good. We did find it a bit expensive for what we got though, especially for the main as those dishes were really small (e.g. rack of lamb is literally two pieces). 

Anon

25 April 2021  
Food & Drink 0.5
Service 0.5
Atmosphere 1
Value 0.5
Overly expensive for something completely underwhelming

The service here was absolutely atrocious! Firstly, it took about 30 minutes just to place an order. That was after being told to wait for our table which was booked. This would have been fine but a group who came after us was seated immediately despite us having a booking. Then when we finally managed to place an order, the waitress was explaining the dishes we had ordered as if we had never dined out before and didn’t know food. So patronising! It’s probably because we didn’t look like their typical clientele. Once the food arrived, we were completely underwhelmed. The Dover sole, at £56, was bland and is probably the worst fish I’ve ever tasted, which is surprising considering it was a seafood restaurant. We also ordered a whole lobster, again completely underwhelming! It was overly salty and not an enjoyable experience. The oysters were ok but nothing to write home about. We had to continuously prompt the waiters to top up our glasses from the bottle which was inconveniently hidden away from us. Moreover, the waiter assumed we wanted tap water, assumed we were sharing a starter, threw the ashtray down on our table once asked if we could smoke (no verbal confirmation) and kept reaching over our table to get things for other diners. This is just absolutely unprofessional and off-putting when you’re trying to eat. The only saving grace of the entire experience was Elisa. She is the only one at the restaurant who seems to know what she’s doing. It was her positive attitude and competency that saved the very disappointing and expensive meal! Not only was the food terrible but they didn’t even try to make up for it. They still charged us the full price even though we left half the Dover sole and complained. Considering the money we spent, we should have had a much better experience. That was our first and last time dining at that restaurant!

Alex G

03 October 2019  
Food & Drink 4
Service 4
Atmosphere 4.5
Value 3
Still shucking good

For any restaurant to have endured in London for more than 100 years, it must be doing something right. Bentley’s track record dates to 1916. A recent visit served as a reminder that the venue is still going strong, having arguably been reinvigorated since Richard Corrigan has been at the helm. Consider a visit here an experience, as much for the people-watching as for the food. Word to the wise: fight your way past the tourists sitting on the heated outdoor patio and avoid the upstairs grill room which can either be populated by rowdy groups or might equally be half-empty and hence curiously lacking in atmosphere. Instead, it is best to stick to what has worked for decades and sit at the oyster bar just to the left of the entrance. Here, the vibe is consistently lively with the clientele comprising everything from seafood connoisseurs to rich sugar-daddies with notably younger other halves – and everything in between. Enthusiastic staff with an air of old school professionalism keep things ticking along nicely. My comrade and I sat at the counter top bar and took it all in, while enjoying some superlative food. What Bentley’s does best is oysters, and the venue claims to shuck over 1,000 on a daily basis. We began with a half dozen of the native variety, spanning West Mersea and Loch Ryan. They were deeply intense, both earthy and salty. We then moved on to seafood starters: octopus for me and eel for my comrade. The dishes were presented beautifully although I did feel that my dish was a slight anti-climax after the previous oyster-high. Somehow it didn’t matter though, since the wine (a lovely Gavi) continued to flow. Onto the mains and while my comrade opted for a sublime piece of Dover Sole, I veered off-piste an went for the grouse. This was not to be perverse (why eat game in a restaurant specialising in seafood?), but more since I adore the bird and it is only available for a brief window each year. That Bentley’s was able to serve it almost to perfection was testament to the skills of the kitchen. The accompanying elements of peach, broccoli and jalapeno were superb foils. None of this comes cheap: oysters are at least £30 for a half dozen, starters could set you back £25 and mains more than £50. Nonetheless, it is definitely worth it. Get someone else to pay and luxuriate in a decadent London experience that has stood the test of time.

Anon

08 July 2019  
Ultra reliable and always excellent.
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