Alloro, a highly
sophisticated Italian restaurant
in the heart of Mayfair
19-20 Dover Street
Tel: 020 7495 4768
Modern, smart and sexy. That’s
the vibe at Alloro, a highly sophisticated
Italian restaurant in the heart
of Mayfair. With its patrons (who
mostly appeared to be testosterone
filled Italian businessman) looking
like they’d stepped straight
from an Armani advertising campaign.
The interior is simple and contemporary,
with clean lines and a use of wood
throughout, whilst half etched
front windows add disgression and
privacy. Tables are well-spaced
with starched linen tablecloths,
fine-stemmed wine glasses and comfortable
chairs. There is also a busy and
bustling bar at the front which
was packed to the gills on the
night of my visit.
In the kitchen is Turin born Executive
Chef Daniel Camera, who perhaps
does not have the notoriety of
some of the more celebrated Italian
chefs residing here. However, judging
by his busy restaurant and ex-pat
clientele, I expect it is only
a matter of time before he is revered.
As it was such a hot and humid
evening a classic Bellini (fresh
peach juice and champagne) was
the perfect aperitif. Our dining
experience then commenced with
a little pre-starter, a refreshing
summer gaspacho served with fruit
that at once cooled and refreshed
our palate. This came with accompanying
cheese and herb breadsticks, artistically
wrapped in a linen napkin.
The menu is divided into four sections.
I began with a salad of crayfish
with asparagus and avocado. It
arrived picture perfect, with plenty
of fanned crunchy asparagus spears,
concassed tomato flecks, creamy
avocado and juicy crayfish. The
accompanying dressing being vigorous
on the palate. This I soaked up
with plenty of speciality breads
that were regularly replenished.
My guest’s pan-fried goats
cheese looked mouth-watering. Presented
on a large glass platter it was
almost seared on the outside with
a soft, luscious interior. Sitting
on a bed of fresh spinach leaves,
he said the softness of the cheese
was interspersed with a textured
crunchy middle whilst tiny caramelised
onion shards added bite and texture.
Throughout the evening the sommelier
helped guide us through the extensive
wine list which is renowned for
having some of the finest selections
outside of Italy. We began with
a slightly fizzy and flinty, Cayega
2007 Roero Arneis Tenota Carretta
Piemonte £35.00. A easy drinking
white wine with earthy overtones
and a rich and lush interior.
Skipping the pasta dishes for fear
of overload, we moved straight
onto the main course. I had a plate
of monkfish, served pan-fried with
chorizo and sautéed potatoes.
Served with a saffron mayonnaise
that decorated the plate like a
piece of modern art. It was a hearty
dish, the monkfish holding its
own against the strong flavours
all vying for attention on my palate.
My guest ordered one of the specials
of the day. A duck breast cooked
exactly as he’d asked came
perfectly pink and thinly sliced
with accompanying grilled figs
adding texture. A rice salad with
copious nuggets, including chives,
tomatoes, rocket leaves and orange
zest added a summery freshness.
To drink, we had a bottle of Guidalberto
2006 Cabernet Sauvignon San Guido
Toscana, £65.00, which proved
a robust full-bodied accompaniment.
Struggling to find room for pudding
we shared a hot chocolate fondant
with its delectable lush gooey
interior, the rich chocolate and
cold vanilla ice cream pairing
superbly together. Served on a
rectangular frosted glass plate
it came pleasingly served with
I thoroughly enjoyed my evening
at Alloro. It’s the sort
of restaurant one usually can’t
find outside Italy. Serving authentic
cooking in fine surroundings resulting
in a memorable experience.
Louise Elgin. July 2008
Two courses £29.50
Three courses £35.00
Four courses £39.00
House wine £18.50 a bottle.
19-20 Dover Street
Tel: 020 7495 4768
Restaurant Reviews – The Best Of
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