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Hibiscus

29 Maddox Street, Mayfair, LONDON, W1S 2PA

5 rosettes

A decade has passed since Claude Bosi uprooted his lauded Ludlow restaurant and relocated to London. At the time, the move raised eyebrows: a chef of Bosi's standing could have set up shop in a fancy hotel, but always one to plough his own furrow, he opted instead for a discreet place - in swanky Mayfair, admittedly, but nothing too flash, somewhere rather dignified. A makeover in 2013 gave the place a more contemporary face, with muted tones and modern artworks, pale oak floors, tables turned out in their best white linen, and a magnificent floral display in the centre of the room. Bosi has a thorough grounding in French culinary traditions thanks to a childhood spent at his parents' restaurant in Lyon (France's food 'capital') followed by a stint with super-chef Alain Ducasse. The result is a passionate chef who puts his all into sourcing the best ingredients, mostly from around the UK, and turning them into stunning compositions on the plate. At the bargain end, the three-course lunchtime menu (with half a bottle of wine, coffee and petits fours thrown in) is terrific value for food of this level, otherwise there's a 7-course 'classics' menu, which is a great introduction to Bosi's modern take on the cuisine of his homeland, or those who are happy to embrace the unknown can opt for the surprise menu, and put themselves in the very safe hands of a chef at the peak of his powers - after all, you're unlikely to encounter anything that is less than stunningly successful. Expect to be served artfully constructed dishes that are swooningly pretty but never lack punch. You might open with salsify and smoked hay velouté with black garlic and a huge umami hit of 3-year-aged Parmesan, or be guided by the dictum that says good things come in small parcels, as when delicate ravioli are filled with Herefordshire snails and partnered with white ham and parsley liquor in a clever take on that classic Gallic idea. Mains bring together combinations that meld together as a whole while maintaining the integrity of each individual element - an immaculately handled piece of Dorset skate wing, for example, served ŕ la grenobloise with brown butter, capers, parsley and lemon. Or try meltingly tender braised ox cheek alongside heritage carrots and blood orange. It's not unusual to see vegetables cropping up in desserts, but a sweet potato cheesecake really works, especially when it's offset with blood orange and meringue, or there could be a powerful chocolate mousse served with basil ice cream and star anise brittle. Matching wine to such adventurous flavours is quite a challenge, so consider splashing out on wine flights, or let the sommelier guide you through the eclectic list.

Further information

Tel: 020 7629 2999
Please quote 'The AA'.
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Open/closed

Days closed: Sun-Mon
Dates closed: 24-26 Dec, 1 Jan
Days closed for lunch: Tue-Wed

Restaurant information

Cooking type: Modern French
Chef: Claude Bosi
Number of seats: 48
Accessible for wheelchairs.
Disabled toilets.
Children welcome.
Children's portions.

 

Restaurant price guide

A La Carte Dinner Main Course from: £19.00
Prices are for guidance only. Please check when booking for current rates.

 
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Nearest station: Oxford Circus, Marble Arch

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