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FACT Review: A shucking spectacular experience at The Maine Mayfair

The Dubai-born brand adds some razzmatazz to London.

Dinner and a show go together like Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. The Maine Mayfair feels like an extension of the West End, and offers a theatrical dining experience. Visitors can enjoy New England dishes, cabaret-style entertainment and scene-stealing old (and new) Hollywood glamour. The swanky spot has welcomed actress Salma Hayek, director Baz Luhrmann and reality TV royalty Kris Jenner. The restaurant often hosts A-list parties that will give you FOMO.

The Maine wouldn’t look out of place in Maine, but first opened in Dubai in 2014. Restaurateur Joey Ghazal, who was born in Montreal and raised in Dubai, is behind the concept. He was inspired by the summers he spent as a child on the East Coast. The brand expanded to London in November 2021, and Ibiza in June 2023. He explains: “The Maine Mayfair is the revival of this historical townhouse in the heart of Mayfair London – blending old world elegance, a New England extravagance and a touch of subterranean decadence.”

The Maine Mayfair is located in a Grade II listed building, and was once home to James Graham, Duke of Montrose. Choose from four stunning spaces: The Brasserie offers dinner and a show; The Drawing Room is a private dining room; The Tavern is a servant space turned speakeasy behind a hidden bathroom door; and The Terrace is a stable turned English garden. Since a clear day in London cannot be guaranteed, here’s one thing that can – the terrace is covered as well as heated, and blankets are available. 

The Maine Mayfair

The Maine Mayfair’s The Brasserie oozes old world charm, and it feels like you’ve stepped onto a Gene Kelly film. The designers know how to make an entrance – a grand staircase opens up to the dining room with a sparkling chandelier, and is a spot that has launched a thousand selfies. The décor includes red velvet curtains, white pillars and a sleek stage with a grand piano, drum set and double bass. 

Every seat faces the stage, however, the Grand Circle’s tables for two are a tight squeeze, as you sit side by side with a small surface. Opt for the Lower Stalls if you want to be near the music, or Upper Balcony if you want to be away from the action.

The Maine Mayfair

The Maine Mayfair’s menu spans hot and cold starters, raw bar, steaks, and seafood dishes. The menu impresses with high-quality premium ingredients: Angry Lobster Pasta, Japanese Waygu and Kaluga Hybrid Caviar. The staff, dressed in white jackets and shirts with black bow ties, professionally and politely explained the menu. If you are halal, the staff are happy to help. The options include beef cuts from the New York Sirloin to Rib Eye.

We started in style with Freshly Shucked Oysters, which have been sourced from France, Ireland and the United Kingdom. The Beef Carpaccio was a colourful creation with lemon, parmesan and rocket, and was well-seasoned and smooth. Plus, the Spicy Shrimp Linguine had a fiery kick, and the fish soaked up the rich tomato sauce.

The Maine Mayfair

The menu includes comfort food classics. The Crispy Fish Tacos were recommended by the waiter, but they did not elevate the flavours and felt more appropriate for a street food stall than a fine dining restaurant. The humble mash was upgraded to the Lobster Mash, which was a creamy concoction.

The dessert menu reads like New England’s Greatest Dessert Hits. The options include a Death by Chocolate Cake, Soft Baked Cookie and White Chocolate Cheesecake. The Key Lime Pie was suitably sharp yet sweet, and came topped with Chantilly cream.

The Maine Mayfair

The cocktail menu is thoughtfully designed with illustrations of the drinks. The names are a nod to New England and include an Espresso Manhattan, Mayflower Martini and South Side. Plus, the non-alcoholic drinks range from the Citrus Sparkler to the Passion Fruit Cooler.  

Dinner and a show is a tried and tested formula, from The London Cabaret Club to Lío London, but rarely visited by locals. It often feels like two left feet, as one offering outperforms the other. What sets The Maine Mayfair apart is its passion across its eatery as well as entertainment, and its city as well as celebrity visitors. The result: a showstopping spot. 

GO: Visit https://themainemayfair.com for more information. 

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Kohinoor Sahota - Deputy Editor
A sucker for a good story, if you invite Kohinoor to a gallery, comedy night, new restaurant, hiking trip, cycle ride, pool day or just about any activity, she’ll probably say yes – that is if she isn’t busy planning her next adventure.

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