"Sophisticated NAC is one Mayfair’s more laidback restaurants"Review Rating: Reviewed by Leila
NAC stands for North Audley Cantine, but the last word is a bit of a misnomer. Although there’s the odd industrial touch not usually seen this side of Oxford Street (like whitewashed, exposed brick walls) there is nothing canteen-like about this Mayfair bistrot.
The restaurant is the brainchild of three friends of French, Brazilian and North American heritage, so while the menu is largely Gallic, each of their native countries is referenced. That’s why below the pissaladiere and cabillaud you’ll find macaroni and cheese, and churros with popping sugar among the desserts.
The food consists entirely of small plates, priced between £9 for smoked salmon and £47 for caviar and mashed potato; if you’re hungry it’ll be all too easy to rack up a hefty bill. Foie gras was tasty but needed a bit more time at room temperature. Oeuf Parfait had a deliciously silky slow-poached egg on a bed of forest mushrooms, heavily redolent of truffles. The cabillaud is cod, which here they’ve turned into plump fish fingers and paired with a homemade herby tartare sauce; we prefer the Saint-Jacques, seared scallops that melt in the mouth, served with a butternut squash purée that’s just the right side of sweet.
But desserts are the real showstoppers: moreish profiteroles with praline cream, and an exceptional pain perdu, French toast covered in chocolate and sprinkled with chopped orange.
With friendly service and a soundtrack of French hip hop and British pop, NAC offers one of the neighbourhood's more laidback dining experiences.
Leila reviewed NAC (North Audley Cantine) on Tue 28 Jan 2014