Lunching and partying at the Ivy Restaurants in London

I always knew about the Ivy living in Central London and I often walked by this glamorous restaurant but for no reason whatsoever I had never been inside for a meal. That is, until recently, when I was invited to two separate business lunch events which swept my away. Read why in my review. 

 
The Ivy restaurant was first born in 1917 as a cafe’ and with the years become the restaurant as we know it nowadays. To date, The Ivy restaurant has had some renovations, the last one being in 2015 which aimed to conserve certain iconic structures , such as the assortment of British art and the
windows. The masterpiece has to be the original Eduardo Paolazzi installation, which can be found at the entrance.
 
The restaurant not only has a main dining room on the ground floor, but it also has a private room on the first floor which seats up to 60 guests for private functions, such as the ones I was invited to.
 

Monica Costa at the Ivy Soho Brasserie

 
The Private Room at the Ivy was recently redesigned by Martin Brudnizki Design Studio and what first catches your eyes is the stunning bar and the art collection everywhere you glance. Not to mention the feeling of light that comes from the lovely windows with their stained glasses and from the majestic lightning around the bar area and in the dining room itself. I can only think at one word that catches all of the Private Rooms’ beauty and this is elegant.
 

At health-themed private events organised by Jungle Cat Solutions we regularly meet TV doctor Dr Hilary. What a charmer!

 
For both events the tables layout looked truly stunning and inviting. At this point, I could not wait to taste the food that people where raving about! I can assure you that I was not disappointed.
 
 
On both visits, we were welcomed by an amazing staff team whom greeted us and was always available. I have to mention that on both occasions, the Ivy’s staff were exceptional in delivering a wonderful and impeccable service.
 

Antipasto: Burrata with San Daniele ham

 
The starter on my visits were a delicious and delicate Burrata with San Daniele ham, mojo verde and black olive dressing and a Crispy duck and watermelon salad with umeboshi plum sauce.
 

Antipasto: Crispy duck and watermelon salad with umeboshi plum sauce and pomegranade

 
Both starters were so delicate to the palate and yet so different that I cannot compare them at all. All I can say is that I had never tried crispy duck before and I have now fallen in love with it. 
 
The main meals for the events were Welsh black lamb rump with wilted spinach, pressed potato cake and Madeira sauce and the classic Ivy shepherd’s pie.
 

The Ivy shepherd’s pie is a culinary masterpiece

 
In all honesty I am not a big fan of lamb, but this main course was delivered in all its beauty and fragrance and I could not resist in at least trying it. To my surprise, it was the best lamb I had ever tried and I am now again a lamb fan.
 
 
Saying this, compared to the second event’s main, the Ivy shepherd’s pie, I have to duly note that the pie was a not only a feast for one’s eyes, but a culinary masterpiece. Although a traditional British classic, the Ivy shepherd’s pie has conquered my palate and I will most probably dream about it in the next coming days. 
 
Lastly, the dessert plates arrived and they were an Amalfi lemon panna cotta with raspberry granite and a lemon sorbet accompanied by pineapple chunks and pomegranate.
 

Dessert: Amalfi lemon panna cotta with raspberry granite

 
I have to admit that I have a weakness, which is that I truly adore anything that is classified as a dessert! Tasting the two puddings which looked incredibly delicious and tempting, I have to admit that I was not as impressed as with the starters and main courses above.
 
 
The panna cotta was not as consistent as I had remembered it from trying it in different occasions in Italy, the country where this dessert is renewed since the 1900s.  If the panna cotta had been called by another name, maybe I would have enjoyed it much more, not knowing to compare it to its original source. While the lemon sorbet accompanied by pineapple chunks and pomegranate was somewhat bland to my taste buds especially after tasting the above sumptuous starter & main meal.
 
The apple tart from the Soho Brasserie, on the other end, was the best pudding I have ever tasted in my whole life.
 
 
Last but not least, it’s worth mentioning the bread which is baked on the premises and is served warm. If I could buy it from here, I would as it is much better than the local bakeries. 
 
 
To conclude, I would like to rate the two events as follows:
 
Starters & main meals: 10/10
Dessert: 6/10
Service: 10/10
Venue & d├ęcor: 10/10
 
I would definitely recommend the Ivy Private room restaurant to anyone that would like to try traditional British food and style at the same time, accompanied by great staff and elegance.  
London Mums’ editor Monica Costa has always said that the Ivy is her favourite restaurant in London and I can now finally understand why.
 
 
 

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