One of Covent Garden's best dining options and among London’s top tapas bars, Opera Tavern serves Spanish-Italian dishes in the cosy setting of a former pub.
Despite growing competition, the Opera Tavern remains one of Covent Garden's best dining options and among London’s top tapas restaurants. Formerly a pub, it’s split into a slightly charmless upstairs restaurant and a cosy, mirror-backed bar at street level. The latter has been stylishly updated with chocolate leather bar stools, copper spotlights and an open grill; the main kitchen is in the beer cellar.
The Spanish-Italian menu is kept fresh with regular specials. The signature burger of juicy ibérico pork and foie gras remains deservedly popular, though more inventive combinations better showcase the kitchen’s delicate touch and careful sourcing of ingredients. Char-coated venison was enlivened by jerusalem artichoke, pickled walnuts and truffle, while the natural sweetness of scallops (served in the shell) was balanced by a feather-light pea, fennel and mint purée. Watch out, though: portions are dainty and it’s easy to rack up a hefty bill.
The Spanish and Italian wine list is well curated; smooth and nutty manzanilla pasada is the ideal aperitif for sherry sceptics. Little touches such as allowing diners a taste before committing to a glass exemplify the sophisticated, amiable service.
Opera Tavern is part of the Salt Yard Group, along with Dehesa in Soho and Salt Yard in Fitzrovia.
We specialise in Italian and Spanish influenced tapas and have a charcoal grill on the ground floor where we cook up all manner of tasty meaty treats including our very popular mini ibérico pork and foie gras burger. We've taken our inspiration from travels all over Spain and Italy and hope you enjoy the results!
Housed in a beautiful former pub, the exposed brickwork, bold artwork and flattering low lighting help our two-story restaurant create the perfect atmosphere for a pre-theatre meal or drink. The ground floor houses a long bar with the open grill at one end, and a few tables placed beside the theatre box windows, where guests can watch the world pass by outside. There is an upstairs dining room available for private hire, which is also used for one-off meals and events such as the seven-course feast dedicated to exquisite white Alba truffle.