NAC in Mayfair
With stylish yet traditional dishes, NAC (North Audley Cantine) is a new restaurant in Mayfair. The layout boasts modern décor with light bulb lamps, white-washed brick walls, marble tables, black staircases and comfortable leather sofa areas. The restaurant attracts a mostly wealthier clientele, fresh from a business day or a shopping trip around Bond Street. The setting is ideal for after-work drinks and grabbing a small bite to eat.
Starting off with a sampling of their very extensive drinks list, first was the Lady Grey cocktail – a delicious concoction of Earl Grey-infused gin, blended with champagne, with notes of vanilla and peach. It was light yet had a distinctively fragrant taste.
As for food, the restaurant offers a limited list of small plates, which diners are encouraged to share. The friendly and attentive staff were more than willing to explain the menu style. A selection of the sharing dishes included Macaroni & Cheese, Oeuf Parfait, Tomates (heritage tomatoes) and Boeuf (sliced beef tenderloin). The dishes were served in small sharing portions, on traditional flowery serving plates.
The Macaroni & Cheese was served with optional truffle, which instantly complimented the flavour of a very indistinct cheese sauce. The pasta resembled very large hoops, with a great deal of space inside for the sauce – an inventive twist on an old favourite.
The heritage tomatoes, served with rocket pesto and red onions, were a refreshing complement to the meal, featuring yellow, green and red tomatoes. Even though this was really something of a garnish, the small plate worked very well contrasted with the stronger flavours.
The Oeuf Parfait was unimpressive: described as a 63° egg, one expected something more than a poached egg that seeped into sweet forest mushrooms and by the end turned the dish a little mushy and tasteless. But the presentation was excellent, with the mushrooms encircling and wafers crowning the egg.
The true delight of the meal was the dessert – Churros – a surprising Spanish favourite on an otherwise French menu. Served with chocolate sauce in a little jar and with vanilla ice cream covered in popping candy, the dessert was a tasty reminder of happy childhood memories.
Overall, NAC is a stylish restaurant with many appetising dishes and great presentation, but the atmosphere, menus and prices are better suited to after-work drinks and light meals.
Photos: Pippa Evans
To book a table at NAC, 41 North Audley Street, London W1K 6ZP, call 020 7493 3443 or visit here.