The first thing you need to know about Opso is that the menu is headlined by caviar. That should be your first clue that this Greek restaurant in Marylebone is less humble taverna and more emergency spritz of Terre d’Hermès before a formal introduction to the tzatziki. It’s got prices high enough to make Plutus proud, but it’s also bright, modern, and home to a sophisticated pavement terrace. So if you’re in the mood for feeling gorgeous with your most gorgeous friends, and you can find it in your heart to forgive a near-£30 cauliflower broth, then Opso is the place to be for a year-round stylish summer holiday in the heart of London.
Your experience at Opso will be weather dependent. We know that’s not a fun sentence for a country with a climate that is best described as ‘meteorological fuck boy’ but stay with us. If the weather is serving Mykonos then you definitely want to be out on the terrace, sipping mastiha cocktails while eyeing up your neighbour’s Missoni blouse and the mountain of black truffle being ceremoniously grated over a glistening lamb shank. If the weather is leaning more, erm, Manchester then sit inside the beech wood dining room. The look is sleek professional meets Nordic yoga retreat so whether you're here for client schmoozing or anniversary date night vino boozing, you’ll be charmed. Even inside on a rainy day, it’s easy to create the illusion of ocean views with a splash of sherry vinegar in a salty octopus stew, the simplicity of honey-smothered imported feta, and the mini-break meal magnum opus, the mousakas.
The mousakas at Opso is a thing of béchamel wonder. It's a deconstructed take on the traditional involving a foundation of smoke show grilled aubergine, layers of rich braised beef ragu, and a thick streak of buttery béchamel. It’s the must-order standout dish and also £26. But unless you’re willing to flirt with the idea of hitchhiking, a flight to a night of crisp salty Santorini wines will inevitably cost you more and this one-dish vacation includes a naughty little top layer of extra skinny fries. For the potential of sweet words over a sour cherry pavlova with that special someone or suave catch-ups where tablecloths are destined to be stained with peach bitters, the steep prices are worth it for a slice of Mykonos in Marylebone. Exceptional service, elegant plating, and if you’re in the mood, a little Greek caviar too.
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Opso’s tzatziki is the real deal. It contains all the usual suspects—roasted garlic, Greek yoghurt, and cucumber—but each component is perfect. The yoghurt is extra creamy, the cucumber sliced down to tiny refreshing specks, and the garlic is generous enough to constitute a no kiss warning.
A charming double act of sticky honey-soaked pastry and tangy feta. Served with sesame seeds because, texture.
Reader meet mousakas. Mousakas meet reader. You might think you’ve met before but trust us, Opso’s take is truly original. This should be consumed with a full fork split straight down the centre so you get a proper medley of each layer. Zesty aubergine, mega rich beef ragu, béchamel doing what béchamel does best, and—praise be—crunchy potato slivers on top.
The kind of thing we imagine is served at a celebrity barbecue. You’ll know the lamb shank is on its way because a small table will appear next to your chair. Next, the smell of fresh black truffle. Then finally it will arrive covered in mushrooms and graviera cheese. The lamb meat itself is mouth-meltingly tender and so pink it would make Elle Woods proud.
Sour Cherry Pavlova
Light and bitter in a way that things primarily constructed out of sugar shouldn’t be. The sour cherry sauce and the dark chocolate cream all add up to a real lip-smacker dessert that is startlingly refreshing.