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Over the past three years Manuka’s modern Euro cooking with a Kiwi twist has wowed locals. Owners Joseph Antippa and Tyler Martin have now opened a second restaurant in Marylebone, Salt & Honey, leaving their Fulham enterprise in the hands of others. So, does the original still deliver? The fairly minimalist decor of the cosy dining area is little changed, although a basement cocktail bar has been added; the good-value menu has also expanded, yet remains attractively concise. From this, pan-fried scallops with cauliflower purée and truffle honey was a lovely combination of clean flavours let down by small shellfish. However, a main-course special of pork belly was cooked to perfection with earthy accompaniments of Puy lentils and mushrooms; and sea bream came with a delicious truffle mash, clams and hazelnut pesto. For pudding, salted caramel pannacotta was sublime. The verdict? Manuka Kitchen has maintained its ‘great little restaurant’ status.
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