Novikov might be a restaurant on the fancier and pricier end, but it’s a restaurant that’s going to be worth it.
Situated in Mayfair, Novikov is spilt between the Asian restaurant and the Italian restaurant. The Asian side of the restaurant follows an oriental vibe and features a dark wooden theme; whereas the Italian side, from what we managed to peek through, features a grand and extravagant white theme.
Novikov has somewhat become a birthday favourite. It began as a last-minute plan as I forgot to make reservations to my plan A and there’s no availability. But since then, Novikov has been one of my most favourite restaurants in London.
As soon as we sat down, we were served with some assorted healthy nibbles, i.e. celery sticks, carrots, tomatoes, cucumbers, etc. alongside a house salad sauce. It also came with shot glass of cranberry juice mix, which was tangy and refreshing.
The menu offers a wide range of food options. While not the whole menu is halal, all halal options are clearly marked on the menu with a halal sign.
Here is what we had:
Truffle Siu Mai
When I think about Siu Mais, I think of street food instead of fine dining. We had our doubts ordering it but this ought to be one of the best food decisions we’ve ever made. Each Siu Mai was elegantly topped with a slice of truffle. The truffle was incredibly fragrant and actually complimented extremely well with the Siu Mai. I never thought I would ever use the word “juicy” to describe a Siu Mai but these at Novikov’s was exactly that.
Thai Chicken Soup Dumplings
Seeing they were each delicately placed over a spoon with soup in it, I initially thought the soup part stops there. However, I was wrong. These were pretty much like Xiao Long Baos, bursting with soup & juices as you bite into the dumpling. While dumplings / Xiao Long Baos are a Chinese staple, these ones here screamed Thai. The soup was incredibly fragrant, with a wave of lemongrass aroma sweeping through at every bite. We thought this was a very innovative idea and quite an epitome on pan-Asian fusion cuisine!
The money bags are basically dumplings that are shaped into a money bag, like a little purse storing gold and silver back in the ancient days in China. It’s a classic dim sum and it’s meant to carry an auspicious symbolism of bringing in money and wealth.
The dumplings were gorgeously made and tasted great too. Its dough was made just right, not too thin nor is it too chewy. It carried a subtle piquant touch of spice in the filling which really opened up the palate as well. Only if it’s true that the more you eat the richer you get!
Crispy on the outside and packed with flavours on the inside, these duck rolls were an absolutely moreish treat. It’s got quite a generous amount of stuffing in there and was bursting of flavours. It came with a side of hoisin sauce, which complemented well with the duck meat. Whilst I wouldn’t say they are like superstars like the other dim sums mentioned above, it’s still undoubtedly a good one.
Chilean Wagyu Fillet (180g)
Moving on from the dim sums, we had their Chilean Wagyu Fillet.
The lusciously buttery sensation and umami flavour of the steak was impossible to not swoon over. It might not seem a lot but since the wagyu steak tasted so rich, it was of just the right portion to share between two. The steak was cooked to a perfect medium and showcased a gorgeous pink tint on the inside. It’s so tender in texture and practically melts in your mouth. A side of ponzu sauce and a wedge of lime was served together with it, which helped to add a little tang to it.
The lamb chops had a beautiful glaze and were presented very nicely. After the amazing dim sums and the wagyu steak, we thought the lamb chops were comparatively underwhelming. Don’t get me wrong, it was still good, but just not a “wow”. That gorgeous glaze carried a nice hint of sweetness that’s pretty addictive to the palate.
Razor Clams Rice Hot Pot
We weren’t entirely sure what to expect for this one, but it had been an exceptional treat. The hot pot was bubbling upon serving. Starting with the razor clams, they were absolutely amazing. They were of fresh quality, with a savoury and briney touch of flavour. The taste of sea was fully soaked into the saucy rice. The sauce of the hot pot was very rich and cooked to a slightly creamy texture that made the dish resembles a risotto. I thought this dish was one absolute stunner!
Molten Chocolate Cake
Last but not least, dessert time! A few desserts stood out from the menu but every time I ended up with the molten chocolate cake.
The presentation was really simple but the flavours were a winner. First of all, they successfully created the lava effect where the insides of the cake were incredibly gooey and came gushing out upon slicing. The chocolate was rich, with the perfect balance of sweetness in it. On the side, there was a scoop of vanilla ice cream, which generated a sensational contrast of hot & cold when eaten together with the molten chocolate cake.
…Novikov never fails to impress and it’s always been an absolutely delightful and extraordinary meal there. From setting & decor to services and food, it’s been flawless. The food constantly took me by surprise on how they elevated simple dishes into such exquisite flavours. Especially for the dim sums, it’s practically the food I grew up with and it’s quite an ecstatic experience to savour these dishes on a sophisticated level in contrast to the home/street-style I was more used to. If you’re looking for a nice spot for an occasion, I would definitely recommend Novikov to be one on the list. It’s going to be pricey but well worth it for that special occasion.
Partially halal. All halal items are clearly marked on the menu.
Alcohol is present at the restaurant.
Nearest station: Green Park