When it comes to foods haunted by long established clichés, the oyster has to be the far and out winner. It’s an aphrodisiac, don’t ya know? But all the stuffy images of horny middle-aged couples looking to reignite that long burnt out fire over a plate of the fishy delicacy are banished with this central London dining spot. Wright Brothers Soho is cool.
Recently reopened following a major refurbishment in March 2014, it’s stripped back with exposed industry-style lights highlighting the red leather booths and matching wooden furniture. Aesthetically, therefore, Wright Brothers is relaxed and informal with just the necessary amount of edge required by its W1 postcode.
Following on from the acclaimed Wright Brothers Oyster & Porter House in the bustling Borough Market, this restaurant had a lot to prove. More expensive than their Borough space and perhaps slightly less lively than its Spitalfields sister, the Soho branch nevertheless has bucket loads on offer. Lets start with the food.
With its rich history in oyster farming and fishing, Wright Brothers is a name you can trust. Founded by Robin Hancock and his brother-in-law Ben Wright, these oyster specialists source their product directly from their own Duchy Oyster Farm, part of the private estate of The Price of Wales on the Helford River in Cornwall. Such is their popularity, that the farm is now one of the biggest in the UK. Impressive.
And despite being miles from the Cornwall coastline, all this is translated onto the plate in Soho. Visitors can choose from a selection of oysters, dressed oysters or sharing platters to start. I went for the Chilli Jam dressed oysters (£8.25 for three); beautifully fresh with plenty of heat, it was a palate pleasing start to the meal. Of course, Oysters are not all that are on offer. From the small plates, diners can enjoy a selection of meat and fish dishes including Salmon Ceviche (£8.50), Wild Sea Bass carpaccio (£9.50) and Beef Tataki (£9).
Moving onto the main dishes, there is again a big range of seafood on offer. Highlights include the Whole Wild East Sussex sea bass with tomato and olive salsa (£29) and the whole black pepper crab (£20).
Though its prices don’t mark the cheapest in London, its top quality, fresh cuisine and relaxed atmosphere make it well worth a visit.
13 Kingly Street, W1B 5PW / 020 7434 3611