Restaurant Review: Murano, Mayfair

Date of visit: May 2021

I took my boyfriend to Murano for his birthday a few years ago and ever since it’s been one of my favourite places in London (despite only one visit!). So it was top of my list of places to visit post lockdown with my sister, and I managed to get a Friday night booking in the second week.

Murano is Angela Hartnett’s one starred offering in London (in addition to her other Cafe Murano restaurants, not to be confused) and is unique, at least from my experiences, in terms of its menu. Looking online you will see 4 sections of food - broadly similar to a starter course, pasta course, fish course and meat course. But then there are options for 3, 4, 5 or 6 courses (£70, £85, £95 and £105 respectively). Within whichever option you choose you can actually pick any dishes from any parts of the menu and have them in any order - more than one per section if you want. I think this is a great approach as I often find some sections of menus much more appealing than others. That said, my sister and I both opted for 4 courses in the order on the menu.

As usual I had already checked the wines on Vivino before the meal and chosen the first bottle of white on the menu to accompany our meal - an excellent choice at £48. We also had a glass of champagne each which I thought was very good also. The wine list is largely Italian, but with French options as well. Many were very reasonably priced.

The Bread and Oil

As this is an Italian restaurant the bread is served with oil instead of butter, which was of good quality and had a rich taste. We did use up all of the oil though and this wasn’t topped up until our second round of the delicious bread. The basket included a focaccia, sourdough and gristini/breadsticks. The focaccia was plain in our first round and had olives in the second - both delicious and well salted, with firm crust and soft interior. The gristini had a light flavour of Parmesan I think, but unsalted and not particularly tasty. The sourdough was delicious.

The bread is also served with a plate of cured meats - a coppa and salami of some kind. Both delicious and I assume sliced in-house as it was very soft.

The Menu

The meal started with an amuse bouche which was some sort of cold pea soup/mousse which was light and refreshing. There was also a canapé with a pate/mousse on a Parmesan flavoured biscuit, also good.

For my first course I chose the sea bream (or perhaps it was sea bass) tartare which had small pieces of apple and was served with a gazpacho. The gazpacho and apple were (as with the amuse bouche) very light and fresh. The tartare itself was full of flavour but perhaps slightly on the salty side.

My sister chose whipped ricotta with spring vegetables which I tasted and was also a nice start to the meal. I think the tartare was a better choice though.

For the second course we both had the nduja and burrata agnolotti with pecorino fondue (I’m not sure what makes it fondue and not a sauce). This was lightly spiced from the nduja and the pasta was perfect as you would expect. The small pieces of pepper on top were perhaps the best bit though! 

For the fish course I chose turbot with moscato veloute, white asparagus, lardo and morells. There were also some blobs of taramasalata which is on every menu in the city these days! This was very well cooked but for me the highlight was the asparagus. Absolutely marvellous. The dish could have used some more colour, however.

My sister chose monkfish with romesco, courgette and peppers. I had a small bit of this and it was lovely and smokey/barbecue-ey.

For the final course I chose beef fillet with hen of the woods and black garlic, charred spring onions and a bone marrow sauce. A triumph! Absolutely delicious in every way. The beef was perfectly cooked (suggested rare), the sauce packed a punch and the mushrooms had an amazing smokey flavour. Choose this if it’s available!

My sister had pork which was quite a large portion actually. I had a small bite and the pork was very well cooked. My sister thought the lettuce served with the pork was a bit out of place. The beef was the better dish.

By this point we were both too full to order pudding (which also happened last time I went to Murano) and so went straight to the petits fours. This included a shortbread biscuit and a small jelly. These were fine but not out of this world. The waiter offered us a second round of them actually, which I have never seen in a restaurant before.

The Service

The dining room is beautiful and the service was attentive and friendly throughout. The only time this dipped was when we ran out of oil for our bread and this wasn’t topped up. The pacing of the meal was really excellent as we finished after about 2.5 hours which had no gaps or rushed moments at all.


Bread and butter: 5/5

Fab, frankly. And nice to have charcuterie with the bread as well!

Food: 4/5

The beef was amazing but probably the only real wow moment in this meal, so a 4 seems about right.

Service: 4.5/5

Almost perfect!

Value for money: 5/5

Really good value, especially for Mayfair. There are plenty of little surprises throughout.

Overall score: 4.4/5


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