By John O’Ceallaigh
As the hotel ends its extensive rebuild project – which has added new floors up top, a subterranean level with spa below, and lots of other fancy features – Claridge’s has now revealed what will become of its flagship restaurant space. Announced this week, the Davies Street-facing dining room will be home to the simply titled Claridge’s Restaurant. The location had previously housed the Davies and Brook restaurant that was overseen by Eleven Madison Park’s Daniel Humm.
Now commencing a low-key soft-opening phase before the proper launch in September, the “classically inspired but contemporary” British restaurant will be operated entirely in-house by the hotel, with Claridge’s Irish-born chef Coalin Finn in charge. The name is a return to form too: it had the same title some 20 years back.
Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, Claridge’s Restaurant will serve familiar dishes “with modern twists”. Think buckwheat crumpets laden with soubise cream and truffle purée for starters; or grilled lobster with crushed Jersey royals for mains; the current dessert menu features raspberry vacherin and a chocolate soufflé tart with cocoa nib ice cream. More generally, starters range from £10 to £26; mains are priced from £28 to £68; and desserts are generally priced at £16. You can see a full sample menu at the bottom of this article.
Like many other elements of the expanding Maybourne Hotel Group portfolio, the space has been designed by Bryan O’Sullivan Studio (so there’s another Irishman taking charge behind the scenes). There are plenty of classic touches – antique brass, Calcutta Viola marble – and art-deco flourishes. Artworks come from the likes of Sean Scully, Guiggi and Richard Gorman; there are two bespoke commissions by Brian Clarke.
And of course, there’s an on-site bar. This one will focus on classic seasonal cocktails – perhaps an Ambre Highball (a white wine spritzer with stone fruit) or a Peach Piquant, mixed with tequila and mezcal. And if you’d prefer something a bit different there are plenty more options beside. Claridge’s still serves one of London’s best afternoon teas; the recently opened Claridge’s Artspace Café is a pretty-as-can-be patisserie with free gallery exhibitions; and 14-seater L’Epicure is a combined private dining room and chef’s table down by Claridge’s ordinarily-off-limits kitchens.
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