Do you sometimes wonder if you’re single handedly keeping the burrata industry alive? Have you seen enough exposed brick to last a lifetime? Are you, by any chance, currently in the process of cancelling your dinner plans so you can stay in with Disney Plus? It sounds like you’re suffering from Dining Deja Vu. Enter Apricity, a warm, chatter-filled Mayfair restaurant, where each and every fine dining dish is a true original. This is a restaurant that will surprise you, delight you, and charm you out of your dinnertime boredom quicker than you can say ‘I’ve actually never had sauerkraut tempura before’.
At first glance, you won’t realise you’re about to have a meal that will permanently redefine the virtues of kale in your psyche. You’ll see the artfully distressed walls, the golden glow of the globe lighting, the thriving foliage, and doe-eyed couples who are on course four of seven and look glad that they resisted the siren call of a ready meal for their anniversary. From the wooden coat rack in the centre of the room, to the big-belly laughs from the trio of friends in the corner, Apricity feels more Foliage Enthusiast’s Very Nice Flat than fussy fine dining establishment.
London's Best New Restaurants Of 2022
Apricity is serious about sustainability, but as soon as the food hits the table, or one of the expert servers nudges you towards a tangy pickled blackberry manhattan, it’s clear that satisfaction trumps stuffiness. You can kick it à la carte, but the memorable seven-course tasting menu is under £100. So really you should go all in for dinner with your closest friend, rounded off with a fig leaf ‘chouxnut’. Or a sophisticated date night that revolves around hand-feeding each other sourdough between courses.
The food is best described as globe-trotting. Think lip-smacking smacked cucumber alongside sauerkraut tempura; sensationally meaty, hand-dived Scottish scallops cosying up to some tender, black pepper pork belly; and a pork dumpling in a feisty horseradish broth. The stark menu rarely hints at the showstopper nature of what you’re about to eat. Case in point, a red butterhead lettuce salad with crispy kale. It has the consistency and moreish temptation of a cake, subtly sweet from burnt-off cobnuts, with zesty slivers of rhubarb, polite dollops of miso aioli, and fried crispy kale that does an excellent impersonation of seaweed. It’s a certified freak of the salad world, a vegetable revelation. Then, the next course will arrive and you’ll be merrily stupefied by some profound vegetable experience once more. Be warned that the menu is seasonal so it changes regularly. But hey, that’s a great excuse to come back the next time Dining Deja Vu strikes.
Sign up for our newsletter.
Be the first to get expert restaurant recommendations for every situation right in your inbox.
The menu at Apricity changes regularly but here is an idea of what you can expect.
Pork Dumpling, Celeriac, Horseradish, Rich Broth
Some fine dining restaurants love to say something is ‘warming’, then it arrives with all the spicy complexity of a Nik Nak. But this dumpling dish is genuinely packing some smile-inducing heat. The smoked paprika and hot spice is the headline flavour, the soft dough of the dumpling brings the comfort, and the overnight bone broth brings a richness that lingers.
Hand-dived Scottish Scallops, Parsnip, Black Pepper Pork Belly
We eat a lot of scallops because we’re pretty sure that counts as ‘self-care’. So we can say with full confidence that this is The Scallop. It’s huge, sweet, and so delightfully buttery. Even without the addition of parsnip and a chewy sliver of pork belly, it’s a memorable mouthful.
London Red Butterhead Lettuce Salad, Cobnuts, Crispy Kale
This salad reads like the kind of thing that would appear in one of our recurring nightmares where we’re haunted by a nutritionist. But it’s actually a celebration of the richness of cobnuts, the salty crunch of fried crispy kale, and the lingering acidity of rhubarb. Officially London’s best salad.
Cheswell Feather Blade, Caramelised Shallot, Kentish Broccoletti
A dish that tastes like it has been orchestrated by a mythical food matchmaker. The Cilla Black of the ingredient world, if you will. The bitter vinegar meets sweet, caramelised shallot dressing. The leafy zing of the broccoli paired with the smokiness of that exceptional hunk of meat. Together, unmissable.
Chouxnut, Baked Apple, Fig leaf, Hollis Mead Crème Fraîche
A naughty wink of a dish, with the soft chewy comfort of a doughnut and the sophisticated tear of patisserie. It tastes like Christmas morning, and now pops into our brains at 10-minute intervals as we remember that sugared crust, the fruity spice of fig leaf, and crème fraîche creaminess. Yes. A million times, yes.