UK Restaurant and Hotel Reviews

London Hotels
Family Restaurants
Press Contact

Clifford Mould revisits a youthful haunt...
Scott's Restaurant, Oyster Terrace and Bar

Scott's is one of London's oldest restaurants. When I was a student it was in Piccadilly and half a dozen oysters cost 10/6d, (that's half a guinea!) I remember being put off eating oysters in those days because of a friend who had once been taken there after having had rather a lot of Champagne which reacted with the oysters in an alarmingly rapid fashion. Apparently the waiters all moved in like the Imperial Guard and the other diners were completely unaware of his predicament. Now that's service for you!

On this occasion, I arrived having already had oysters and Champagne at a cocktail party earlier in the evening, so once more I resisted the oysters at Scott's. Nowadays half dozen rocks from Loch Fyne will cost you (£8.50).

The restaurant has been relocated in Mayfair for thirty years and it was given a complete makeover a couple of years ago. There is a huge plate glass window overlooking Mount Street revealing several levels and a translucent spiral staircase wrapped around an impressive cylindrical glass tank with an hypnotic flow of ever rising bubbles. My guest remarked that it was like watching an eternal gin and tonic.

Had I not previously dallied with seafood, I would probably have gone for the famous Scott's shellfish platter (£19.0) - even better value at £31.00 for two people. Starters include seared scallops with celeriac and garlic for £9.50, or mussels steamed in white wine with cream and herbs, (£6.75). Not all the dishes are fishy ones; for instance you could have goat's cheese baked in a light pastry or artichoke stuffed with mushrooms topped with a poached egg, both at £7.00.

We decided on soup. I chose a Morecombe Bay shrimp bisque (£6.25) which was thick and intensely flavoured both with shellfish and spices - very comforting after my earlier canapés. My guest was intrigued by the soup of the day which was a minted green pea concoction and decided he would try it. His reaction was quite rapturous, so I had to have several spoonfuls myself. It was really lovely, quite delicate but with a smooth velouté texture and a complex mixture of herb and mint flavours. We were impressed.

I continued with pan fried Turbot (£22.50) which was absolutely first rate - very juicy, flakey and tasting of the ocean; it came with a spicy aubergine timbale which was excellent in itself, but I personally found it a little too heavy an accompaniment for the fish. A whole roasted John Dory (£18.50) was quite crisp and strongly flavoured; the flesh fell off the bone rather readily. Side vegetables were well cooked, especially some bubble and squeak, a very traditional and excellent English way of using up previously cooked potatoes and cabbage.

We tried various wines by the glass from a good list. A blend of Chardonnay and Viognier from "Tortoise Creek" in the Pays d'Oc sounded suspiciously like Aussies at work, and the wine was certainly upfront and fruity (£4.40 a glass). Lawson's Dry Hills Riesling is certainly from Australia, and is outstanding, as it should be at £6.00 a glass. Particularly recommended is the claret, a 1995 Lalande de Pomerol, with overtones of plums and figs (£6.90 a glass). Drinking by the glass is rather an expensive way of sampling some very enjoyable wines which are better value by the bottle.

There is a good selection of puddings including some traditional English favourites which are also a good test of the kitchen. Lemon meringue pie can often be very disappointing in restaurants with a horrid confected finish that's not the real thing at all. When he saw the Scott's version with its elaborated piped meringue my guest went a bit pale but this was soon dispelled when he tasted the intense citrus filling on its crisp pastry base. The bread and butter pudding was well made using using crème pâtissière instead of ordinary custard. I would have enjoyed it even more had it not been served cold - I like it hot with the bread really toasty.

I'd recommend Scott's, particularly for those who like something rather traditionally English in style, but without that irritating clubland hauteur one sometimes finds in the more old fashioned establishments of that ilk.

Scott's Restaurant, Oyster Terrace and Bar , 20 Mount Street, Mayfair W1
Reservations: 020 7629 5248

Since our review, Linda Dezonie wrote:

Many thanks for your comprehensive review on Scott's Restaurant of Mayfair.
I decided to take the plunge and invited 5 guests to join me there on Monday evening: We all had a very enjoyable dinner. Your review was extremely accurate and thorough. I would add that it was a pleasant surprise to find extremely simple (cheaper) dishes on the menu together with excellent, first class (more expensive) fish courses. In sum, a superb evening was had by all as a direct result of your review.

I look forward to trying a few more restaurants as recommended by you!


UK Restaurant Reviews – The Best Of The Dine Online Restaurant Reviews 2001 - 2010

Your comments please!

Email us your suggestions, reviews, comments.

We very much want to hear your comments on restaurants you have visited, wines you have tried. Maybe you disagree with us, or perhaps you want to recommend a place we haven't yet covered. Email us at with all your suggestions, reviews, comments.

Back to Dine Online Home Page

Copyright © 2007 MidasCode Ltd

Views or opinions expressed by authors are not necessarily those of the publishers, Midascode Ltd.
While every care is taken in compiling this publication, the publishers cannot assume responsibility for any effects arising therefrom.

MidasCode Ltd
5 & 6 The Azure Suites, Churchill Court, 112 The Street, Rustington, W Sussex BN16 3DA
Tel: 01903 779538 International: +44 1903 779538 - Fax: 01903 856683 – Mobile: 07860 899235 – International +44 7860 899235

Want your Restaurant Reviewed? Send requests to

Registerd Office: Highland House, Mayflower Close, Chandlersford, Eastleigh, Hampshire, SO53 4AR - Company No 05916096

Grape Seed Extract | Collecting Debt | Food Gadgets