Whether you’re in London or Dubai or Madrid, Amazónico is where you’ll want to be dining. Only, it won’t feel like you’re in any of these cities – and that’s exactly the point...
Walking into the dimly-lit Amazónico in London’s Mayfair is like being transported into a tropical rainforest – abundant foliage is everywhere, luxe velvet banquets are covered in jungle-hued fabrics – forest green, orange and gold – and there’s an atmosphere of opulence the stays with you the entire time you’re immersed in Amazónico. If a toucan or monkey appeared by your side, you probably wouldn’t be surprised. Suddenly, the busy streets of Mayfair feel far, far away.
Amazónico originally started in Madrid back in 2010 and arrived in London in 2019. Located in Berkley Square, the home of Annabel’s and Sexy Fish by Richard Carin, they nailed the location. But it’s what’s inside that will truly blow you away. As celebrated restauranteurs, husband and wife team Sandro Silva and Marta Seco knew what they were doing when they first created Amazónico in Madrid, turning it into one of the city’s most popular establishments. Now in London (and Dubai), you can see why it has been such a success – it offers something we all crave, an escape from the everyday. And while the restaurant is very large – there are five-areas in total – it feels very intimate. You could dine with one person, like I did, or a group, and it almost feels like you’ve got the whole place to yourself. The staff certainly make you feel like you’re the only people there – the attentive service is flawless. The tables are incredibly spacious, so unlike other venues, you won’t feel like you’re dining with the people next to you. If you need even more privacy, there’s a private rainforest room– naturally, which is jungle-inspired – which can seat between 6 – 22 guests (no wonder celebrity clientele reportedly includes the Beckhams, Rita Ora and Cristiano Ronaldo).
Amazónico’s vibrant interiors and delicious food
Of course, being founded by two Spaniards, the atmosphere is as vibrant as the decor. Live entertainment is, according to Sandro, “part of the Amazonico DNA”. At night, you’ll listen to performances from the restaurant’s house band, who play Latin-inspired jazz, Bossa nova and Cuban.
When they opened back in 2019, the founders threw themselves into the launch, relocating their family – they have three sons – from Madrid to London. They describe the venture as their “fourth child”, and like parenthood, the more love you put into it, the more you get out of it. Their passion has paid off – in this post-COVID era, Amazónico is thriving.
The décor is just the beginning of the Amazónico experience. The food. Oh, the food! Where to start? Maybe I’ll start with the drinks, because that’s always a good place to start, and also, the cocktail menu is unlike any cocktail menu I’ve perused before (and there have been many). It’s more exotic. More exciting. More colourful. More inventive. Some options: Monkey Business 19 (whisky, lemon, honey, fennel pollen, corn, ginger and banana) or Amazonegroni 15 (pineapple Infused gin, vermouth, Campari and sesame). We settle on a ‘Guaivo 18’, which is a sweet mix of gin, watermelon and guava shrub, cardamon, lemon, pomegranate, jasmine and soda. Yum. There’s also champagne and delicious wine from all over the world – France to Argentina.
The idea is that dining at Amazónico is a like embarking on a journey along the Amazon River. The menu is carefully designed to showcase the culinary and cultural diversity of Latin America, so as you’d expect, it’s full of flavour and surprises. Unexpected combinations, which you never knew existed until now. We start with a selection of dishes – ‘Ensalada Amazónica’, a zesty mix of mango, avocado, confit tomato and kalamansi citrus; ‘Tuna Laqueado’, which is a heavenly plate of seared Akami tuna, manao crunch, pineapple and tamarillo ponzu. There’s also the best guacamole I’ve ever eaten – served with mixed with sea urchin and green plantain crisp. Plates of sushi and sashimi arrive – a delicious twist to the Latin American flavours. Then, we move onto the charcoal grilled meats – Chimichurri marinated skirt steak, Chilean wagyu fillet, Brazilian style grilled rump steak – even better paired with some of the delicious sides such as Argentinian-style baked cheese, sun dried tomato, anchovies. It’s all utterly exceptional.
By the end of the lunch, we don’t want to leave. I suspect no one wants to leave. My girlfriend and I emerge from our Latin American adventure, back to the busyness of life, and start planning our next Amazónico date.
The Grace Tales was a guest of Amazónico.