Holland Park’s excellent Greek eatery
We had just returned from two weeks in Greece, where we ate grilled fish, Greek salad and lots of gyros. As fans of taverna fare, we could happily exist on grilled sardines and tzatziki for longer than the annual two week break. We’d only been home for a few days before we headed to Holland Park’s Vori, which offers ‘soulful and rustic’ Greek cooking to the people of W11 and beyond. Were we happy to be home?
Our London summer has nothing in common with the Greek climate and Holland Park Avenu can’t be confused with Corfu, or even with downtown Athens. Our grey skies share nothing with their blue ones. Still, Vori has a welcoming vibe and a smarter feel than a coastal taverna, though there is a wall of bright blue shelving that nods to the Greek blues. The menu is less island taverna and more W11, and there’s a list of exclusive and rare wines instead of simple carafes, but the holiday feel is definitely there. To start ,we order pan-fried king prawns with Ouzo and feta, and they’re impressively huge and tasty, improved by the aniseed sweetness and feta saltiness. Deep-fried courgette fritters come with more feta and greek yoghurt; they’re small and elegant balls rather than fat patties. Portion sizes are very murch urban, not rustic, and Vori’s small plates for sharing scheme is let down only by the table being too small to accommodate many plates, even if they are small. Next comes seafood: octopus on the grill with gremolata, baby potatoes and tomato sauce is a large curled tentacle, excellently grilled with no toughness or rubberiness. The texture is lovely. Grilled squid is simply served with green taramolata and it’s just as stylishly served. For pudding there’s Greek cheesecake, which is a deconstructed pot of biscuity, honeyed creaminess, and a delicious Greek ice cream with tahini and honey. Vori has launched a breakfast menu too, so we’ll be back to try that.
120 Holland Park Avenue, W11