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Murano

20-22 Queen Street, LONDON, W1J 5PP

4 rosettes

After cutting loose from the Ramsay empire, Angela Hartnett's career trajectory has headed ever upwards, and she now heads up her own mini-constellation of restaurants. Back in 2008, her elegant Mayfair flagship weighed in as a serious contender among London's upscale Italian dining establishments, but these days the kitchen takes its influences from a wider sweep of the Continent. The setting is a fresh, light-filled room whose Mayfair postcode is reflected in the upscale decor: the namesake Venetian glass stars in spiffy chandeliers, above white leather seats, crisp table linen, fluted art deco-style columns and sheaves of fresh flowers. For culinary voyeurs, a swanky chef's table offers the expected window onto the kitchen, while the super-professional, smartly groomed and attired service team make everyone feel special with their effortless cordiality. The menus clearly reflect Hartnett's Italian-influenced upbringing, and prime Italian ingredients and preparations are very much on show. A stunningly fresh and simple composition of sea bream céviche with creamy avocado, chilli, coriander and citrus compôte is a first course with decidedly contemporary credentials. Follow with Cornish sea trout with caramelised fennel, crushed Jersey Royals and cucumber yogurt - and those excellent ideas come from the remarkably wallet-friendly set lunch option. Trade up to the flexible carte, which leaves you to choose whether to stick at two courses or do the whole five, and you might set out with a hearty pairing of pan-fried scallops and confit duck leg with almond purée, apples and dates, the timing spot on, the flavours deftly handled. Given Hartnett's grasp of the subtleties of Italian food, it would be a mistake to pass on the pasta, with the likes of pheasant agnolotti with white onion purée, rosemary jus and black truffle on offer, or crab ravioli with almond pesto and grilled spring onions. At main course stage, fish is expertly handled - perhaps sea bass with white bean purée, octopus and charred romanesco - or there could be a comfort-oriented pairing of crispy pork belly with celeriac purée, king prawns, grapes and crispy tempura kale. Desserts are equally stimulating, with a pistachio and olive oil cake with blackberries and milk ice cream sitting alongside a classic Amalfi lemon tart. The impressive wine list naturally features well-chosen Italian growers, with France also well represented, and the expert Italian sommelier also allows in the odd bottle from the New World.

Further information

Tel: 020 7495 1127
Please quote 'The AA'.
Send an email

Open/closed

Days closed: Sun
Dates closed: Xmas

Restaurant information

Cooking type: Modern European, Italian influence
Chef: Angela Hartnett, Pip Lacey
Number of seats: 46
Accessible for wheelchairs.
Disabled toilets.
Children welcome.
Children's portions.

 

Restaurant price guide

2 Course lunch from: £28.00
3 Course lunch from: £33.00
2 Course dinner from: £50.00
3 Course dinner from: £65.00
Prices are for guidance only. Please check when booking for current rates.

 
Murano, London w1

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Nearest station: Green Park

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