RestaurantsLondonWestminsterW1K

Harden's says

The Mayfair site acquired by Richard Caring in 2016; initially planned as a ‘Caprice Café’ and now open as the third London branch of the growing Ivy Asia concept.

survey result

Summary

£84
 ££££
3
Good
2
Average
4
Very Good
* Based on a three course dinner, half a bottle of wine, coffee, cover charge, service and VAT.

“Wanted to hate this chain but it’s actually really good” – Despite being totally un-PC in its level of cultural appropriation, it looks like Richard Caring’s is going to make a go of this “extraordinary” new sub-branch of the Ivy brand (which has opened five further branches around the UK). True, “it’s part of a big corporate machine with little intrinsic character”; the über-“kitsch” styling is “love-it-or-hate-it”; and some diners feel “these places are ghastly and overpriced”. But even if “the jewelled floor is more interesting than the food”, most folks feel that the “OTT decor” “justifies the trip in itself” and that the long, pan-Asian menu is “so much better than expected”.

Summary

£72
  £££
2
Average
3
Good
4
Very Good
* Based on a three course dinner, half a bottle of wine, coffee, cover charge, service and VAT.

“Great fun … despite lots of Instagram poseurs hanging around” – that’s the most common view on Richard Caring’s latest Ivy sub-brand: a mashup of “stunning” OTT interiors and a Pan-Asian menu which by-and-large totally avoids dishes from China to throw together Thai curries, wagyu beef and lots of fish and seafood (much of it presented as sushi or sashimi). Even fans would concede that “the food is secondary here – for entertainment value, this place has ‘got it’, but the menu is somehow lost in the mix”. And there are those who discern “crazy levels of cultural appropriation (a floor-to-ceiling, fake banyan tree? Seriously?), stirred in with a menu that’s less Asian-fusion than Asian-confusion, all creating a bit of a Caring-inspired mess”. This year saw the addition of a Mayfair branch to the original one (in the shadow of St Paul's) and last year’s opening in SW3 (where “very loud music can add to the already-high noise level”).

Summary

£66
  £££
2
Average
4
Very Good
3
Good
* Based on a three course dinner, half a bottle of wine, coffee, cover charge, service and VAT.

Richard Caring continues to pimp the Ivy brand to the max: since this Asian-themed sub-brand first debuted in Manchester in 2018, it has expanded with a 200-seat venue in the City’s One New Change mall (“great view of St Paul’s”) and – in August 2021 – a second branch opened in SW3 near The Ivy, Chelsea Garden; (and there’s a third coming soon on the Mayfair site that was once Princess Garden). True to Caring’s restaurant DNA, the decor in all locations is wildly maximalist, with fluorescent onyx floors, replica samurai armour and (cringey?) pagoda-style roofs over the bars. Some reporters do find the effect “very cool, in a see-and-be-seen kind of way”. To say the least, though, the Asian-theme-park styling doesn’t send the message that authenticity is on the agenda – a concern which the Chelsea branch’s risibly off-message launch video did nothing to allay (‘naive… totally inappropriate and culturally insensitive’… and that was just what they said about it themselves!). As to the sushi and wide menu of other Asian-inspired scoff: some diners find it “surprisingly good” but, all things considered, it’s kinda beside the point.

For 33 years we've been curating reviews of the UK's most notable restaurant. In a typical year, diners submit over 50,000 reviews to create the most authoritative restaurant guide in the UK. Each year, the guide is re-written from scratch based on this survey (although for the 2021 edition, reviews are little changed from 2020 as no survey could run for that year).

Have you eaten at The Ivy Asia Mayfair?

The Ivy Asia Mayfair Restaurant Diner Reviews

Reviews of The Ivy Asia Mayfair Restaurant in W1K, London by users of Hardens.com. Also see the editors review of The Ivy Asia Mayfair restaurant.
PA C
service was friendly and excellent. with st...
Reviewed 7 months, 25 days ago

"service was friendly and excellent. with staff going above and beyond to cater for needs. genuinely hospitable and warm. yes decor is full on. but it is rich and fun. add in a decent crowd for a lunch and it was nice to be there. music was decently pitched for a lunch in volume terms. food wise. some aspects excellent. I can see the Mish mash may confuse a little (Thai curry, sushi, chicken skewers and dumplings) by romping it's way across Asia. but broadly speaking it was enjoyable to eat. I probably would go again for the whole experience.."

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