You’ll find one in every friendship group. They know which internet provider you should use. They know how many weeks, days, and minutes it is until mother’s day. And yes, they have an excellent range of Tupperware. They’re the person everyone turns to because they’re organised, smart, and rarely wrong. We like to think of this person as the certified grown-up of the group. And when it comes to Notting Hill restaurants, the certified grown-up is Mazi.
You can tell almost everything you need to know about this upmarket Greek spot within ten minutes of being here. You’ll be greeted by a smile. You’ll smell fresh fish and mint. You’ll be taken to a table either inside, or out on their vine-covered terrace that you’ll recognise from every episode of A Place In The Sun. You’ll be presented with a shot glass of salmon coloured liquid, and they’ll say “welcome, in here we have mastika, lime, watermelon, and sparkling water, enjoy.” One part fun, two parts tasty, and the rest pure adult. That’s basically the recipe for Mazi’s success and we like it.
The menu is split into small jars, salads, hot sharing plates, their bigger signature dishes, and dessert, but whichever section you get involved in, you’ll find classic Greek food that deserves a bottle of white wine for company. Little flecks of orzo pasta covered in cheese, with a proper portion of tiger prawns thrown in. A classic light calamari with a strong hit of citrus mayo. A slab of Greek yogurt with raspberry ice cream between almond tuile, that tastes like an ice cream sandwich grew up, spent a year in Rhodes, and got sexy. It’s light, sunshine food, done right. But it’s also expensive.
You can expect to pay Notting Hill prices here. Don’t let those distressed wooden tables, the casual candlelight feel, and Socrates quotes in the bathroom fool you. Their small sharing plates range from a tenner to 20 quid, and once you invite some of their Greek wine to the table, you’ll be easily spending £60 a head. Plus, the portions can be on the small side, but that’s just because Mazi knows what you don’t. To have the best time here, you should dip into each section of the menu, not fill up on tzatziki before your mains even arrive.
With the cute back garden and the kind of seafood manti dumplings that remind us of sunny holidays almost as much as sand in our bed, Mazi is a charmer. But like all the best adults, it’s also prepared for plenty of occasions. You can come here for a romantic date night over an excellent, shared risotto. For some solo seafood manti at lunchtime, with a good book and a seat in that garden. Or even for a sophisticated birthday dinner that shows everyone exactly who the certified grown-up is. You.
One of the best tzatzikis we’ve had this side of Athens. It’s super thick with a proper dose of garlic. Start every meal here with this.
These are a fiver each, but, you know what, we don’t resent that. There’s enough rotisserie pork belly in here to make wrapping them up a bit of a challenge. The longer we think about these, the more we consider high-tailing it straight to Mazi for more.
The seafood manti dumplings are excellent. The saffron kakavia they come swimming in is even better. Together, they’re unstoppable. Or, you know, very tasty.
A tasty light snack. Do we resent paying £11 for a tasty light snack, predominantly made of courgette and cucumber? Yes, we do. Get them if you’re sharing with a group of three, otherwise order something else.
The citrus mayo that comes with this calamari is an absolute banger. It’s a bit like digesting every jolly memory you have of swimming in the sea on a hot day. The calamari is great too. Order this.
We’re not going to lie to you. This is f*cking expensive. Twenty quid for a portion that in our humble - greedy - opinion can’t really be shared. But, it’s also super tasty and the metaxa bisque will implant itself in your memories under the category: Things We Must Eat Again. Basically, if you’re going all out, go all out on this.
A ball of pistachio parfait goodness, in a bowl of melon coulis. Potentially the cure for all holiday blues.
Sure, you might end up with melted raspberry ice cream running to your elbow but it’s completely worth it. The kind of light, refreshing dessert that doesn’t leave you feeling like you snorted a bag of sugar. A new hot weather favourite.