Rex and Mariano - incredibly fresh fish

There's been a little buzz in recent months about the Goodman Group's newest Soho baby, Rex and Mariano. Being a bit of a fish addict, this was one restaurant I was particularly excited about going to. 

Rex, of The Chelsea Fishmonger, knows his cod from his coley and therefore is one of the brains behind the glorious produce. Mariano, is the beauty behind the wonderous wine-on-tap bar towards the back of the restaurant... which, seemingly are rather reasonably priced decent wines - I say, with a slightly banging head this morning! 

The restaurant is cavernous: bar seating, table seating and snuggly banquettes are grouped around large stylish wash basins and sit in front of a buzzy open plan kitchen where bells chime when dishes are ready. 

We were seated by the oyster shuck bar and presented with two menu's, one paper, one I-pad version (where you place your order) and warned that once sent to the kitchen the food is pretty rapid. So, order it in stages - they weren't wrong! Our drinks came at record speed once tapped 'send' so, we decided there and then to order once we'd finished our dish(es) in order to not be in and out in under 30 minutes!

Everything, I mean EVERYTHING at Rex and Mariano is fish and either cheviche, tartar, carpaccio or very simply cooked (on the plancha). Therefore, if your dining companion ain't a fan - don't go. Unless, they're happy with a whole cauliflower, which does look delicious!

Encouraged by a few people to order the bread simply 'to mop up the juices' was first on the iPad shopping list (served with a delicious tuna paste) coupled with a huge plate of frito misto covered in a spicy 'Old Bay' seasoning and served simply with lemon and mayo. It was seriously satisfying for those deep fried food lovers amongst us and a great mix of different fish and shellfish. 

We then used the powers of the Ipad to set about our own dining pace... 

Sea bass ceviche with coriander, tigers milk, yuzu and sharp red onion. Nice big chunks of lightly cured, incredibly fresh fish doused in a plate lick-able punchy dressing - what's not to love?

and a simple, refreshing, tuna carpaccio serviced with tomato, parsley, olive oil and lemon plus a good lashing of salt. 

Clams in the classic, white wine and garlic were flavoursome and an incredibly decent amount for only £7 - how do they do it?!

The infamous raw red Sicilian prawns were so juicy and sweet I could have eaten dozens of the things (luckily these weren't the man's favourite so I, more or less, had the whole lot!). Just make sure you, do as the Italians do and suck the juicy goodness out of the heads...

To keep the man happy I then quickly ordered one final dish of Sicilian striped prawns in lemon, a lot of chilli and olive oil. These are big (n.b.the photo does not do the size justice), juicy beasts and well worth an order! Especially when you've succumbed to a portion of carbs to mop up the rather gorgeous liquid on the plate. 

Rex and Mariano is a really easy hang out. All dishes are ridiculously reasonably priced for exceptionally fresh seafood... A thoroughly enjoyable evening and one place I would like to think I'll be visiting often, just remember to leave your carnivorous friend behind... 

Square Meal

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1 comment:

  1. Absolutely love this place, can't get enough of it! The raw red prawns are SO good :)

    Rosie xx