Since the 4th Century, caviar has been considered the most outstanding of delicacies, beloved of British kings and Russian Tsars. When buying or dining out on the exalted fish roe, it’s crucial you know how to separate the imposter from the authentic article. Caviar comes purely from sturgeon eggs, three species in particular: Beluga, Oscietra and Sevruga, all of which swim within the depths of the Caspian Sea. Good caviar should be pert, move like a ball bearing in oil and pop in your mouth. The less oily residue, the better the quality.
The appreciation for caviar in London has grown over recent years. The arrival of world-class brands like Volzhenka, who launched in the Capital, and M Restaurant’s ‘caviar week’ (seven days of dining solely dedicated to the rarefied salty beads) has helped affirm the trend. If you’re staying at the opulent Hotel 41 then the finest Sevrugar caviar can be experienced in the adjacent Leopard Champagne bar. To discover more, here’s where to find the best caviar in London.
Whether you want to peruse the Food Halls to purchase some tins, or perch atop a stool at the marble-topped bar at the swish Caviar House Seafood Bar, Harrods is the place to go. The bar features a wide variety of caviar, from accessibly priced house selections like Qiando Classic, to more indulgently priced Beluga.
Of course, the iconic Fortnum & Mason sell tins of their exceptional own brand caviar, but walk behind the deluxe store and you’ll find restaurant, 45 Jermyn Street. Here they have their own caviar trolley replete with Siberian Sturgeon, Golden Oscietra and Iranian Beluga – all served with blinis, baked potatoes and fresh scrambled egg whisked and cooked table-side.
A little down the road at number 55, heritage seafood restaurant Wilton’s present a fine selection including Aquitaine, Royal Belgian Oscietra and Beluga. Brimming with old-world glamour and charm, the historical dining room is something of an institution when it comes to their superlative caviar.
Head a little further east into Soho to Russian restaurant Bob Bob Ricard for a selection that is as gratifying as their witty ‘Press for Caviar’ button. Opulent and sleek, the elegant eatery puts an upscale spin on Russian classics. Savour their Russian Oscietra Sturgeon or opt for a less-expensive White or Siberian Sturgeon.
If you feel inspired to dine like royalty on one of the world’s most exquisite dishes, stay at Hotel 41 and enjoy a central location within easy reach of London’s best caviar restaurants.
IMAGE CREDITS: Main image, Wiltons © Wiltons. Caviar on Ice © iStock/LauriPatterson. ‘Press for Caviar’ © Bob Bob Ricard. Caviar trolley © 45 Jermyn Street