Bloody marys served in an ornate glass shaped like a fish; the benedict part of eggs benedict replaced with lobster; and a private function room where two adjacent walls are replaced with fish tanks. So far, Sexy Fish is definitely living up to its reputation of being one of the West End’s most sought-after, exclusive and quirky fine dining restaurants.
The venue has ventured into the ever-growing mass market of brunch by launching so-called Sexy Brunch parties which will run every Sunday through the summer and feature a guest DJ – Nick Grimshaw and Jodie Harsh are among those to have hosted events so far.
The menu, curated by chef director Bjoern Weissgerber and inspired by “the seas of Asia”, is split into sections including snacks, sashimi and sushi, fried and tempura and warm; you are encouraged to have a variety of options. However, the standout option is the “sexy eggs”, which are poached and sit on a black charcoal muffin (in the shape of an octopus, of course) alongside avocado, tuna sashimi and yuzu hollandaise. The side options are more along the lines of the eateries’ dinner menu, with prawn gyoza (which might just have been the best I’ve ever tasted), flavoursome edamame and wasabi croquettes and light and enriching mixed sashimi.
I arrive at the Mayfair haunt at midday and am immediately surprised at some of the clientele. While I knew Sexy Fish was a popular choice for models, former prime ministers and visiting celebrities from overseas, I was surprised to find most of the diners to be over 40.
However, soon plenty of cameras were flashing at the entrance and 20-year-old DJ Rafferty Law, son of Jude and Sadie Frost, had arrived to hit the decks and almost instantly the clientele appeared to halve in age. Law cranked up the volume, playing Nineties garage, chart hits and Seventies funk while the elegant 20-something rich kids of London (the sexy eggs alone are £18.90) sipped champagne cocktails and ate sushi.
For those who struggle to choose between sweet or savoury courses at brunch, they needn’t worry as the dessert options are also definitely worth trying out. Try the cinnamon donuts with chocolate and raspberry sauce or the freshly baked cookies and milk for a scrumptiously sweet climax to a diverse and exquisite brunch.
Sexy Fish, Berkeley Square House, Berkeley Square, London W1J 6BR; 020 3764 2000; sexyfish.com
Give your breakfast a Middle Eastern makeover with a delicious broccoli shakshuka. This vegetarian recipe is perfect for those who like to add a little spice to their breakfasts and brunches!
10 minutes preparation
35 minutes cooking
2tbsp olive oil
2 shallots, finely chopped
2 yellow peppers, thinly sliced
½tsp ground cumin
1tsp fresh thyme leaves
½tsp ground coriander
½tsp spicy harissa
300g yellow and red cherry tomatoes, quartered
2 garlic cloves, crushed into a paste with
½tsp of salt
150g Tenderstem broccoli
2 free-range eggs
For the yoghurt sauce
100g fat-free Greek yoghurt
1tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice
Small bunch of fresh herbs – coriander, mint and flat leaf parsley, chopped
Sprinkle of za’atar (optional)
Heat one tablespoon of the olive oil in a medium-sized frying pan, add the chopped shallots and fry gently over a low heat for 8-10 minutes, until soft and translucent. Add the sliced pepper, ground cumin, fresh thyme, ground coriander and harissa to the pan and stir well.
Stir in the cherry tomatoes and garlic paste and cook for a further 15 minutes over a low heat. Stir occasionally, adding a little water if it is too dry, but only just enough to stop the mixture burning. Make two wells in the mixture and crack an egg into each well. Cook very gently over a low heat for 5 minutes.
Meanwhile place the Tenderstem in a steamer, or in a colander over a pan of simmering water and steam for 2-3 minutes until al dente. Add the Tenderstem to the shakshuka pan, arranging them around the eggs and continue cooking for a further 5 minutes until the eggs are set.
Make the yoghurt sauce by combining the Greek yoghurt, honey and lemon juice in a bowl and set aside. Sprinkle chopped herbs and za’atar over the shakshuka and serve immediately with a bowl of yoghurt sauce on the side and plenty of fresh crusty bread.
For more recipes, visit tenderstem.co.uk
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