Mortimer House is a 2,900-square-metre members’ club in a seven-storey block on Mortimer Street in Fitzrovia and includes co-working spaces, bars, and lounges for its lucky members. The restaurant is open to the public, though, and how inviting it is! The room is large, well-spaced and softly-lit. The design company AvroKO has even fitted acoustic panels in the ceiling so that you can have a quiet conversation in a busy room. The chef here is Lello Favuzzi, formerly of the acclaimed Shoreditch Italian restaurant L’Anima. The most challenging thing might be working out which combination of which sized plates will leave you full. There are not just small plates here but medium and also large. We decided to start with four smalls, move on to one medium and one large, throw in a roasted sweet potato and two desserts. This was definitely enough and we considered it might even be too much when our friend started muttering about needing to be able to eat dinner that night.
Favuzzi’s largely Italian menu bears a Middle Eastern influence: tahini, za’atar and pomegranate seeds all make appearances. There’s bread with crushed tomatoes and tahini which is somewhat more exciting than it sounds. Then the lightest tempura on a soft shell crab with a yuzu dressing which the waiter asks if he can pour for us. The service is sweetly attentive in this way rather than pushy. There are slightly rough-hewn meatballs among our small plates which we make light work of. We ignore the “ladies who lunch” dishes on the menu, so no tuna tartare or chicken salad for us. The small plate of burnt carrots with labneh and caraway is delicious.
We love the tortelli with burrata and pistachio nuts which we order as a medium plate but it can also come as a large. And then there’s a lovely, silken homemade tagliatelle with flecks of crab that is our only large plate and a whole roasted sweet potato with sea salt but by now even we’re feeling challenged by the amount of carbs on the table. We perk up for dessert: roasted pineapple with salted caramel ice cream, pomegranate seeds and rose petals. It’s delicious but not for the faint-hearted. Our friend eats a lemon sorbet which he pronounces tastes like a lemon sorbet. This sounds like an insult except that this is one of the joys of Mortimer House Kitchen: dishes you love are reliably delicious. We don’t give the drinks list a thorough work out – we’ve got our eye on the mezcal Negroni for next time – but are very happy with the glass of Picpoul from Languedoc that we order.
Would we go back? In a heartbeat. It’s a lovely restaurant: great food, good service and an ideal location, away from the madding crowd.