Famously the scene of an argument between Charles Saatchi and Nigella Lawson, Scott’s in Mayfair is a premium seafood and oyster restaurant. This is not its only connection with fame, as it was also one of Ian Fleming’s favourite restaurants. The glamorous bar was reportedly where he first ordered a vodka martini ‘shaken, not stirred’, discovering that they taste better served this way.
It’s most recent brush with fame was to be when it was chosen as the restaurant for my dad’s birthday dinner.
Established in 1872, it doesn’t have a secret entrance or disguised exterior, rather it has a heavily decorated frontage, involving Christmas baubles, colourful lights and bushy foliage, so it was very easy to spot from the end of the road as we were pulling up in a taxi! There were even tables outside on the pavement (which were practically covered in frost) and left you in no doubt that Scott’s is a restaurant that wants to be seen.
We started by having a drink at the bar, which is the most Instagram-worthy area. Unlike the outside, the inside of the restaurant is decorated in a 1950s style, and is quite classy and understated. The oyster bar takes up the centre of the first room in the restaurant, and there are high stools all the way around it with places set for dinner.
In true James Bond style, George ordered a Martini with a twist. I wouldn’t make a good Bond girl, because martinis are much too strong for me and I’d be on the floor after having just one of them, so I went for a Gin and Tonic instead.
We were then seated at an oval shaped table in the back corner, in the room behind the bar. I had the Pan-fried duck egg to start, with wild rabbit, black pudding, and devilled sauce. I’d seen a picture of it on the website before, so I knew what to expect – and I wasn’t disappointed. It was scrumptious.
George opted for the Smoked eel as a starter. I joked about his meal being something out of I’m a Celebrity, but when I tried a bit it was actually quite nice, and looked nothing like the water snakes you see the celebs screaming about on TV.
For mains, I had a big decision to make, as I was torn between the Miso blackened salmon and the Roasted cod with mixed beans, chorizo and Padrón peppers. Luckily the waiter was extremely good at putting the dishes into words, so I went by his recommendation and opted for the salmon.
My meal was delicious, but at the end I had to ask for it in a doggy bag to take home – it was probably the fanciest doggy bag that I’ve ever been handed!
Adam had the Lobster Thermidor, George had the Crab, and Dad and Karen both had the Smoked Haddock.
Miraculously, I had room left for dessert, and wanted to try the pudding that Time Out magazine had dedicated a whole page to in their recent pudding round-up feature: the Bakewell Tart.
We ordered the Bakewell tart and the Chocolate fudge brownie to share. The waiter delivered both desserts to the table so that we could see them, and then placed a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top. As soon as it touched the pudding it began to melt! So adding it at the table was a really nice touch.
Overall, our trip to Scott’s was really nice. It was casual yet up-market at the same time. I’d like to go back and try some of the different things on the menu for sure. Hopefully the roasted cod will be waiting for me!
James ❤️ Jenny