Cambio de Tercio

Restaurants , Spanish South Kensington
  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 4 out of 5 stars
(7 user reviews)
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© Ming Tang-Evans
© Rob Greig
© Ming Tang-Evans
© Rob Greig
© Ming Tang-Evans
© Ming Tang-Evans
© Rob Greig
© Rob Greig
© Rob Greig

In the Old Brompton Road, a new-style take on Spanish tapas where playful inventiveness doesn't get in the way of flavour; Rafael Nadal eats here when in town.

This is tapas – but not as you might know it. Cambio de Tercio is the high-end big brother to two neighbouring Spanish restaurants. Apparently, it’s where Rafael Nadal eats whenever he’s in town, and is best known for its modern take on classic Spanish tapas. Tortilla was an el Bulli homage in a martini glass (potato foam, warm egg yolk, crisp onion shards), and eight-hour roast tomatoes were decorated with a charming vine of micro-leaves and pearls of basil ‘caviar’ that exploded against the deeply candied tomatoes.

Main courses were just as innovative: grilled skate melted into soft burgos morcilla with a playful orange vinaigrette, while dark, tender oxtail came with a light apple sauce and even lighter lemon thyme foam. A ‘cambio de tercio’ is when bullfights take a radical change of direction or move into the next phase. Unfortunately, the final phase of our meal took a less impressive turn, as desserts failed to meet expectations.

Manchego cheesecake sounded interesting, but lacked the punch of aged sheep’s cheese, and the ‘perfume’ of fruit and jasmine was little more than a fancy fruit salad. Otherwise, the food was outstanding – but perhaps order one more tapa and skip dessert.


Venue name: Cambio de Tercio
Address: 163 Old Brompton Road
Opening hours: Lunch served noon-2.30pm Mon-Fri; noon-3pm Sat, Sun. Dinner served 6.30-11.30pm Mon-Sat; 6.30-11pm Sun
Transport: Tube: Gloucester Road or South Kensington
Price: Main courses £18.50-£25
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Average User Rating

3.6 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:4
  • 4 star:0
  • 3 star:1
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:2
1 person listening
Josephine M

Sent for dinner with bus and and daughter. Food was well presented but the flavours were disappointing. Even though we weren't hungry we were forced to order more tapas than we wanted - never had this in a restaurant in all my travels. Service was frenetic And felt rushed through the dishes. Price was far too expensive for what was offered. Beautiful decor and loved the paintings but would not go back and wouldn"t reccomend it to my friends.


Excellent food and great wine list. Best Tapas in London in my opinion.


Exceptional place. Every single dish was a "WOW!" You will end up spending around £50 per person with wine but it is well worth it. Those 8hr roasted tomatoes taste like meat! My god..


Best meal I've ever eaten. Had the taster menu and each dish was better than the last. Fantastic


I went here last week. Decent food but spoiled by the service. Most of the staff struggled to speak clearly in English (which being London, should be expected, no?) and in particular had to endure verbal abuse from the owner for questioning why a specific wine had been chosen. We didn't like the wine you selected - don't shout at us for it! There are better, cheaper places to go for Spanish food with far less hassle and a better client experience.


Incredible food, service, and ambiance. Ranked as my favorite tapas place in the world


Beautifully presented food, 'interesting' tastes. Unfortunately felt very rushed as they try to fit two sittings in to an evening which considering the price is not really acceptable. They also charged for the bread which wasn't eaten or asked for which is a little trick they do in continental holiday resorts - why do they do it! Food was very well cooked and presented but some dishes lacked balance, with flavour combinations that didn't quite work. The beetroot/mango cheese cake was one, more of a sloppy cheese board, overtly savoury, not a good was to finish the meal!