Greek, Turkish·
Bronze Award

SquareMeal Review of Hovarda

Bronze Award

Yo-yoing between Turkish and Greek cuisines, this Soho grill isn’t quite sure where its culinary expertise lies. Nevertheless, Hovarda (‘vagabond’ in Turkish) is an enchanting spot, its glamorous dining room decked out in aquatic blue and gold tones, its waiters dressed in crisp white shirts. “We really felt the Aegean vibe”, noted one fan.

Proceedings begin with the ubiquitous small plates, but the results are accomplished and impressive. Rings of battered squid are dipped in a sharp squid-ink sauce; strips of coal-roasted red pepper are enlivened by hints of mint and lime zest; raw red mullet arrives über-fresh with juicy chunks of tomato and avocado; crispy rolls of filo pastry contrast well with their delicate crab meat filling (although we thought its accompanying lemon sauce was superfluous).

More substantial mains might bring wood-roasted baby chicken with corn and spelt or Josper-grilled octopus with roasted pepper sauce, but our dish of the night was an intensely smoky, delectably tender ox cheek paired with thick baba ganoush. We’d also recommend staying put for dessert – our pick being the miniature balls of fried pastry (lokma) that arrive drizzled with sweet-as-can-be thyme honey, a sprinkling of walnuts and a scoop of cinnamon ice cream.

On your way out, stop by the stand-alone cocktail bar for one of its diverting concoctions – perhaps a Meraki Mule, a Turkish Martini or a signature Hovarda (raki, Belvedere vodka, cardamom, Greek yoghurt, brown sugar and espresso). Service veers towards over-attentive and prices can add up, but overall Hovarda is a welcome addition to Rupert Street’s already impressive gastronomic scene.

Good to know

Average Price
££££ - £50 - £79
Greek, Turkish
Cool, Cosy, Dark and moody, Fun, Lively, Luxury, Romantic
Food Occasions
Special Features
Counter dining, Gluten-free options, Live music or dancing, Vegan options, Vegetarian options, Wheelchair access
Birthdays, Celebrations, Dates, Group dining [8+], Romantic, Special occasions
Food Hygiene Rating

About Hovarda

Hovarda is an Aegan-inspired bar and restaurant in London's Soho serving sharing plates and signature cocktails in a luxurious setting. Located on Rupert Street between Leicester Square and Piccadilly Circus, this sea-blue-fronted spot provides a warm, cosy and seductive setting in which to eat and drink.  

On the menu, diners can begin their meal with a selection of hot and cold mezze dishes such as seabass ceviche with green apple, red onions, coconut tigers milk and citrus caviar or stuffed florina peppers with aubergine, pomegranate balsamic and black garlic. Yes, they’re a little more luxury than your average mezze plates – no houmous to speak of here! Further down the list, discover dishes from ‘sea’ and ‘land’. You might go for octopus stifado with shallots, apple, raisins, red wine sauce and pita bread, or try the beef fillet with fois gras, truffles, bread croutons, jus and spice figs. For dessert, indulge in baklava with clotted cream or pistachio cake with honey, cinnamon syrup and citrus segments.  

If you’re stuck for choice – and we wouldn’t blame you because it all sounds fantastic – then you can opt to dine from one of Hovarda’s set menus which vary in length and price depending on how hungry you are.  

The drinks at Hovarda are just as refined and inventive as the food. Its signature cocktail list is divided into ‘light and refreshing’, ‘sweet and sour’ and ‘strong’, depending on where your palette takes you. Lighter concoctions include the Bumblebee featuring tequila, lime juice, orange juice, maple syrup and cinnamon, while for something more punchy you can try the Rivington Espresso made with gin, cold brew coffee, cinnamon syrup, and Bordeaux cold brew. There is also a range of Aegan spirits, whiskeys, liquors, beers, wines and soft drinks on the menu.  

Hovarda Menu Highlights

Saganaki - £12.00

kataifi barrel aged feta, truffle honey, basil

Barbouni - £11.00

fried red mullet, olive oil, lemon, black pepper

Main Courses
Kleftiko - £35.00

lamb shank, fried king oyster mushrooms, sundried tomatoes, oregano, lemon

Kritharoto - £30.00

jumbo shrimps, orzo pasta, prawn bisque, basil

Mykonos Sour - £17.00

Copperhead Gibson Edition, Sage Liqueur, Falernum, Citrus, Merengue, Olive Oil

Raki Mule - £15.00

Yeni Raki, Fresh Lemon Juice, Ginger Beer, Agave Syrup


Does Hovarda offer private dining?

Yes, Hovarda is able to host private events in the main dining room, or in the bar.

Helpful? 0

Does Hovarda cater for dietary requirements?

Hovarda's menu includes a range of gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan dishes

Helpful? 0

Can you book at Hovarda?

Yes, tables are bookable for dining in the ground floor restaurant and in the lounge till 10.30pm. You can book at Hovarda's website on: https://www.hovarda.london/reservations

Helpful? 0

Does Hovarda offer gluten-free options?

Yes, Hovarda has a great range of Gluten Free options on the menu.

Helpful? 0

What is the dress code at Hovarda?

The dress code is smart, we kindly ask our guests to refrain from wearing sports wear or shorts.

Helpful? 0

This venue also offers

Private Group Dining


Event Party Venue


Hovarda Events

FreeYacine Dessouki - Aegean Sounds
Live Music
Yacine Dessouki - Aegean Sounds

26 May 2022

Aegean Sounds is a the long lasting signature DJ-led event. It was created four years ago to give the opportunity for Hovarda to invite to London DJs from all over the world to present the differentiated, unique and prototype music direction that identifies with the basic characteristics of high quality and ingenuity that Hovarda presents in all its curated experiences. 

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FreeCatrina - World At Hovarda
Live Music
Catrina - World At Hovarda

27 May 2022

Catrina Davies is a world renowned DJ also known for her modelling and tV work, she dedicates her energy and passion to music both DJing and producing. From behind the decks Cat Davies plays deep house/electro/underground and funky house creating a sound that mixes melody and rhythm.
Catrina has worked with some of the largest global brands such as Heineken, Nastro Azzurro, Malibu, Red Bull, Glamour cigarettes, House of Marley, Milan Fashion Week & Fashion TV. Mi-House Radio weekly show.

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Location for Hovarda

36-40 Rupert Street, Soho, London, W1D 6DW

020 3019 3460


Opening Times

Mon Closed
Tue 17:00-22:30
Wed 17:00-22:30
Thu 17:00-22:30
Fri 17:00-22:30
Sat 17:00-22:30
Sun Closed
Mon Closed
Tue 17:00-01:30
Wed 17:00-01:30
Thu 17:00-01:30
Fri 17:00-01:30
Sat 17:00-01:30
Sun Closed

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