Restaurant Review: Mahiki Kensington

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Style editor Charlotte Ellis checks out the latest celebrity haunt Mahiki, take two

A decade after Prince Harry and an army of well-heeled A-listers made the Polynesian themed nightclub Mahiki Knightsbridge the place to be seen, welcome newly opened Mahiki Kensington. Founders Piers Adam and David Phelps have joined forces with the guys behind Kensington members’ club Albert’s to bring the Tiki dream to a ‘more mature crowd’.

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The new Kensington venue, which has taken over from snow-themed club Bodo’s Schloss is not only the hottest new party place on the block it’s also home to restaurant Pufferfish. Chef Sakorn Somboon (previously of Aqua Kyoto) presents a perfectly formed Pan Asian menu ‘with exotic flourishes’. Favourites were the Wagyu Gunkan Black Truffle from the Raw Bar. Spicy Yellowfin Maki Rolls and Grilled Spicy Octopus. If you’ve tasted the super green and sesame salad from Aqua, well it’s here and equally delightful. While the impressive specials include a 20-day grain fed Chilean rib eye with wasabi pepper, Iberico Pork, 24hr Kimchee marinated lamb chops and Salmon with Lemon Soy, Mango Miso and Ikura.

Baby Heritage Carrot Tempura - Pufferfish

You’ll find suited post work couples dining in the plush velvet booths alongside groups of married ladies giggling over fond, albeit blurred memories from their Mahiki heydays. The Tiki theme and the name draws in the younger society set, the pretty plates and cartoon drinks make for fine social fodder. It’s been rumoured Prince Harry has a secret tunnel leading to the club from his bedroom, so keep eyes peeled for him and fiancé Meghan Markle, along with Brooklyn Beckham and Harry Styles.

As well as the spacious open restaurant, there’s a large bar area at the front of the venue where you can order food, or just drink. A small cocktail bar area in the back where the A-list hideaway and a private dining room for a more intimate occasion.

Crispy Pork Belly - Pufferfish

Like it’s predecessor, Mahiki Kensington adheres to its infamous party spirit, with it’s ‘Aloha Collective’ playlist compiled by some of the biggest names in the music industry – a combination of guilty pleasures from the past and more current music. Shortly after the last chopstick is laid to rest tables and chairs are pushed aside to turn the venue into an all dancing nightclub that continues unto the wee hours.

Wagyu Tataki - Pufferfish

Where: Puffer Fish at Maliki Kensington, 2A Kensington High Street, London W8
Bookings: To make a booking, phone 010 7368 1180 or click here

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