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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Over-the-Top Turandot

Itar-TassOpulence abounds at Turandot, where not only the interior is extravagant, but the servers' attire, too.
It's easy to guess the design philosophy at Turandot: There's no such thing as too much gold. It curls around columns reaching up to a soaring dome, encrusts a mechanical peacock, spirals in Chinese designs across the walls and catches the light on waiters' jackets.

So unexpectedly gilded and extravagant is the chinoiserie-style decor of the restaurant -- reached by a plain brick entrance next to Cafe Pushkin, on Tverskoi Bulvar -- that diners stand gawking at the door to the 6,040-square-meter, 400-seat dining room.

Owner Andrei Dellos has said that he oversaw 6 1/2 years of work on the interior, and flew in London restaurateur Alan Yau to create the menu. It's a baroque take on Chinese and Japanese, and fills 27 pages.

All but a few of the main courses cost more than 1,000 rubles. The sumptuous concoctions include lobster baked in miso with sea urchin caviar (4,250 rubles), grilled Chilean sea bass in Chinese honey (1,625 rubles), sweet and sour red snapper (1,165 rubles) and Shanghai-style vegetable fried rice (355 rubles).

Dim sum cost up to 545 rubles; the starters, many vegetarian-friendly, are more reasonably priced.

There is a lengthy list of elite teas with names like "Mountain Peaks in Pink Haze" and "Girl's Ring," priced around 500 rubles. The list of less expensive choices includes ylang-ylang oil and gunpowder green tea (135 rubles a pot), which were bland on a recent visit.

A manager said their flavors had been overpowered by that of Moscow's tap water, although restaurant staff denied the use of tap water in a follow-up telephone call.

The liquor choices include sake (145 rubles for 50 milliliters) and fruit wines (320-470 rubles for 100 milliliters). There's also house beer (220 rubles for 350 milliliters).

Waiters in breeches and high-heeled court shoes are polite, if disorganized. Below that sky-blue cupola, though, everything seems forgivable.

26/5 Tverskoi Bulvar, 739-011, noon-midnight, M. Pushkinskaya.