Noble Rot Soho

British, French·
££££
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Good to know

Average Price
££££ - £30 - £49
Cuisines
British, French
Ambience
Cool, Cosy, Dark and moody, Lively, Romantic, Traditional
Food Occasions
Dinner, Lunch
Special Features
Vegetarian options
People
Dates, Romantic
Food Hygiene Rating

About

There was much sadness when Hungarian restaurant and Soho institution The Gay Hussar closed its doors for good in the summer of 2018, following 65 years of operation. Now, though, the legendary site has been taken on by the almost equally revered wine bar and restaurant Noble Rot, to open its second site in the capital following the Bloomsbury original.

The original Noble Rot has been both a critical and commercial success since opening in November 2015, with head chef Paul Weaver winning over the London crowds with his menu of Anglo-French classics, as well as his ongoing championing of British coastal produce.

Dishes that Weaver’s team has cooked up in the past include grilled Cornish John Dory served alongside purple sprouting broccoli and spiced brown shrimp, and roast Jerusalem artichoke with Roscoff onion and chickpeas. At Noble Rot Soho, you can expect a similar vibe, although the menu here also features a few nods to the glory days of The Gay Hussar.

The Gay Hussar opened in doors in 1953 and throughout its life became known as a popular meeting place for politicians, journalists and artists. Among its famous clientele were broadcaster Sir Michael Parkinson and Richard Ingram, who founded satirical magazine Private Eye. There are many interesting and sometimes scandalous stories attached to the restaurant too, including that The Gay Hussar was the place where a young Tony Blair was encouraged to run for parliament, and that the restaurant provided the backdrop for a meeting between politicians plotting the downfall of Margaret Thatcher.

The Noble Rot brand started out as a food and wine journal, which is still in circulation today. In 2015, co-founders Dan Keeling and Mark Andrew decided to take their ideas and opinions off the page and launch a bricks-and-mortar restaurant. The pair haven’t looked back since and have also launched a wine import business called Keeling Andrew & Co. Sunday Times restaurant critic Marina O’Loughlin is a partner in the restaurant and teased the news of the Soho sequel on her Instagram page a day before the official announcement.  

Location

2 Greek Street, Soho, London, W1D 4NB

020 7183 8190 020 7183 8190

Website

Opening Times

Lunch
Mon 12:00-14:30
Tue 12:00-14:30
Wed 12:00-14:30
Thu 12:00-14:30
Fri 12:00-14:30
Sat 12:00-14:30
Sun Closed
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 Closed

Reviews

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2 Reviews 
Food/Drink
Service
Atmosphere
Value

Anon

23 November 2022  
Food & Drink 4
Service 4
Atmosphere 4
Value 4

Alex G

28 June 2021  
Food & Drink 4
Service 3
Atmosphere 4.5
Value 4
Post-Hussar hurrah

The shoes of the Gay Hussar are big ones in which to step. Noble Rot’s second venture, located on the same site as this former London establishment, nonetheless do the job admirably. Homage to the Hussar is evident, from the artistic triptych of Soho life that adorns one wall on the first floor dining room through to a few original menu items that remain, albeit somewhat reinterpreted. After the success of their original Fitzrovia venture, the Noble Rot team have imposed their clear stamp in Soho. Beyond the impressive wine list (for the uninitiated, the term ‘noble rot’ relates to a grey mould that is deliberately cultivated on certain grapes to aid the production of sweet wines), the kitchen staff have blended French classics with the best of British and a particularly emphasis on coastal produce. The overall impression is of a gentleman’s club that has adapted itself well for the third decade of the 21st Century. On our recent weekday lunchtime visit, the venue was almost full with a pleasingly mixed demographic; young to old and Soho trendies through to out-of-town visitors. Our server struck me as somewhat aloof, but when it came to what mattered – the food, drink and that ineffable thing, atmosphere – Noble Rot certainly delivered. What better representation of the restaurant’s angle than to peruse the menu over a glass of one of England’s best sparkling wines (Hambledon) combined with a wickedly decadent mini choux bun comprising duck liver parfait and Tokajo jelly? Around half a dozen of both starters and mains are on offer, with the former priced in the £10-15 range and the latter at roughly double. My pictured paté was not only a visual delight, but also incredibly tasty; a thoughtful combination of herbs and pistachio as well as meat, that felt lighter than many and appropriate for the season. Sticking with the summer theme, my main comprised rabbit braised in rosé wine paired with a tomato, cucumber and saffron sauce. I rarely eat bunny, but this was a fine example, lean and flavoursome. My comrade also gave the thumbs up to his dishes, particularly the sea bass main. For wine lovers, the venue is an inevitable joy, with an extensive list, available on an iPad, for ease of use. Bargains can be found and we were delighted with our Pinot Noir from Baden, which worked as an admirable match across the food. The great thing about Noble Rot is that there is every reason to linger. Post food and wine, we progressed to cheese and port, followed by coffee. Another bottle might have been in order had it not been for other commitments. Revel in the experience.

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Call Noble Rot Soho to make a booking on:

020 7183 8190 020 7183 8190

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