Spread across a three-storey Soho townhouse, Zima aims to raise the profile of Russian food in London, offering traditional dishes with modern twists. It also claims to have the best-priced caviar in the capital, offering the luxury sturgeon eggs with the traditional accompaniments of blinis and sour cream.
The exteriors might be conventionally monochrome, but once you’re inside you’ll find a series of pretty dining rooms, which are decked out with cosy banquette seating, chequered flooring, Russian artwork lining the walls and a standalone bar. It’s a bright and attractive space, with several areas to choose between to sit down for drinks and food.
Zima’s menu traverses various Russian regions, offering up novel takes on classic dishes from the vast country. To start, you might enjoy the likes of an Olivier salad with chicken sand salmon roe, or borscht with sour cream. Come mains, try dishes such as beef stroganoff or perhaps pelmeni dumplings with three types of fish and squid ink, while desserts see the tempting likes of honey cake, and cottage cheese pancakes.
Prices at Zima are fair considering the surrounding area and the sophisticated surroundings, while a Euro-leaning wine list and a strong selection of Russian vodkas make for satisfying accompaniments to your meal. In fact, Zima serves homemade infused vodka on its menu, and the restaurant also runs its own Zima Picklery, where seasonal vegetables, fruit and drinks are all fermented on-site.
If you’re not stopping by for dinner, you can try Zima’s Russian afternoon tea instead. It is served daily and includes unlimited tea, as well as traditional Russian pastries, such as pirozhki baked buns, blinis with homemade jam and condensed milk, and a classic medovik honey cake. At lunchtime, there is a selection of four-course set menus available, while you can also expect occasional live entertainment in the restaurant too.