Hidden away off Albemarle Street, Gazelle offers all-day modern dining in the heart of Mayfair. It’s the creation of renowned chef Rob Roy Cameron (also behind the amazing Untitled in Dalston) and drinks expert Tony Conigliaro. The place is absolutely beautiful and if it’s not winning awards for its food (which it certainly will be), it will for its design. Pinks, golds, coppers and marble. If I ever designed my own restaurant – it would look like this.
The bar, also known as the Emerald Room is a place of beauty. Exposed brickwork, marble tables, velvet seats and pillows, rich tones of blues and purples, emerald-green sofas and natural light pouring in from the big windows. It’s the sort of place which if you have time, you’ll want to start your lunch or dinner in.
Whilst we looked over the menu and adjusted to our gorgeous surroundings, we enjoyed some of the cocktails at our table from the master himself, Tony Conigliaro. The cocktail menu is short, sweet and heady. Expect small glasses of expertly crafted concoctions which are sure to warm your soul. Order the Champagne based Twinkle for a refreshing start, or the slightly more punchy Babydoll – though you’ll be tempted for a second round!
If you hadn’t already made your way upstairs to the bar, one of things to come out of it is these spectacular small bites of rolled beef, topped with a spoonful of caviar and infused in some way with flavours of coffee which added such a rich and interesting depth to it all. The beef was so soft, well-aged and though perhaps a little pricey per piece – it was well worth it.
Now I’m not going to lie, but the food here is incredibly unusual, some of it unlike anything you’ve eaten before – but that’s what makes Gazelle like nothing else in Mayfair, or indeed London. It’s unique, it’s not copying anyone and it has its own personality, thanks to chef Rob Roy Cameron. Two dishes which will certainly challenge what you know about gastronomy are these two pictured above. Mushroom, pine nut & wild garlic. As well as the absolutely stunning plate of leek hearts in a chicken vinaigrette. Texture wise, it’s all a bit unusual – but the flavours are exquisite.
I think my favourite dish from our lunch was this chunk of monkfish with burnt seeds and pistachio. Sultry to look at, drenched in the most glossiest of green sauces and with such a rich, almost meaty depth to it. If there was ever a signature dish of Gazelle – I think this might be it.
For meat lovers, the presa (pork) will probably be one of the finest examples you’ll eat out of Spain and the kitchen really know what they’re doing when it comes to handling it. Somehow they’ve managed to still retain that beautiful presa texture, but without losing the juicy pockets of fat and still keeping it pink. It’s served with an unlikely salted carrot sauce which I didn’t fall madly in love, but the meat on its own was a real beauty.
Better still was the fillet of beef with juniper and salted plum. I’ve no idea exactly of how and where the juniper & plum was incorporated into the meat, nor where they were sourcing their meat – but it was absolutely exquisite. It’s the sort of dish I only wish I could eat every single day.
Another signature feeling dish here at Gazelle was this dessert of chocolate, passionfruit and savoury. To look at it was so intriguing, with the soft ripples and folds that were almost mesmerising to look at. The chocolate mousse was rich, but light. The meringue topping was like eating a soft cloud, seared with a hot something at the end and the passionfruit offered a nice contrast of sweet & sour. A really beautiful dish.
Our other dessert of grape, bee and pollen yoghurt was the perfect near-ending to our meal. I really loved this dish, both sweet and refreshing, but actually it would be a great breakfast dish and something I’d loved to wake up with over a coffee instead of after lunch/dinner.
We finished up on some petit fours, feeling full, satisfied and as if we’d been taken on a gastronomic journey of flavours and ingredient combinations we thought we’d never try. Gazelle in Mayfair is unusual and very unique – but all for the good. It’s a refreshing new opening from what is otherwise a sea of very similar restaurants. Tantalising cocktails, relaxed service, a beautiful dining room and experimental cooking. What’s not to love?
NB: My meal was complimentary. All views are as always, my own. My views are not influenced by anyone other than my own palate and slightly poor eyesight.