Dining at Scott’s is how you imagine dining on a transatlantic cruise liner would have felt like during the golden age of travel. The keel-like central seafood bar, piled high with ice and shellfish, does nothing to shatter the illusion, scalloped carpet detailing and panelled mirrors bring a distinct 1920s vibe, while the pop of Champagne corks comes in a steady, celebratory rhythm. This is old school Mayfair at its best; unashamedly plush and polished.
One of Scott’s biggest selling points is that whether you’re here for business or pleasure, you’re definitely here to have a good time, so make sure you arrive early to pull up a perch at the marble-topped bar. Snacks are a wonderfully savoury selection of plump olives, crisped pork crackling and almonds which seem to magically refill themselves, while the staff are equally as attentive when it comes to drinks.
A glass of bubbly from the extensive list is the obvious thing to order, but if you go for a cocktail the bartenders are so concerned that your drink is to your liking that they ask guests how they’re enjoying their pour, even offering to remix cocktails if required.
On taking up your seat in the dining room you might be treated to half a dozen oysters to whet the appetite before enjoying a starter such as the famous cheese soufflé, which comes with a bucketload of rich cheese sauce on the side and enough truffle to put a pig straight into retirement. Not everything fares as well, with a bang bang squid salad cold, limp and studded with cherry tomatoes that felt like they’d been thrown in after hanging around too long without a home.
However, stick to the Scott’s classics and you’re likely to eat very well here: a shimmering copper tower, say, heated from below and crowned with a platter of garlic butter-smothered shellfish. Adequate sides do well enough to mop up the juices, but really nobody comes to Scott’s for the chips – you’re here for the freshest fish that’s carefully and classically handled by the experienced kitchen team. Full steam ahead, this is a ship worth boarding.