Exciting new restaurants are springing up like the proverbial daisy in London this spring, from the newly refurbished The Harcourt in W1 to Walter & Monty in the City
Opened in 1826 as the Harcourt Arms, this Grade II-listed, five-storey Georgian townhouse has reopened its doors on Harcourt Street, W1, as a bar and restaurant opposite Ulrika Eleonora Church, the Swedish Church. The Harcourt’s unique Scandinavian heritage is celebrated in its quality food and drink and inspired design, and refreshing philosophy from a team that includes property, design and hotel expert Andrew Endean (Hotel du Vin, Malmaison, Liberty and De Vere), head chef Kimmo Makkonen, and Thomas Haring, the general manager.
Walter & Monty
Yet another street food and pop-up trader puts down permanent roots as this purveyor of Eastern-influenced, charcoal grilled meats and fish launches its first permanent restaurant in Bury Court in the City. Owner and former London City trader Alex Kaye oversees the menu along with head chef Nick Ross, whose experience includes working with Michelin-starred chefs Daniel Boulud and Scott Conant (Scarpetta). The 30-cover eatery aims to remain true to its street food origins, offering mainly charcoal grilled meat and fish dishes (with Eastern spices) that include Walter & Monty’s beef picanha and butterflied leg of lamb marinated in mint, garlic and lemon.
No. 197 Chiswick Fire Station
Darwin & Wallace Group (of No.11 Pimlico Road, The Ebury, No. 32 The Old Town fame) takes over an old Chiswick fire station this month with a menu inspired by the rising popularity of Australian café culture, with ‘Antipodean-influenced’ dishes including pan-fried sea bass and eggs Benedict. This all-day venue (with courtyard space for alfresco dining) will have full bar service inside too, and they’re looking to create in-house infused spirits and house made syrups and sherbets alongside an adventurous wine list.
Following a year long pop-up residency and successful crowd-funding campaign, Som Saa have a new permanent home. Masterminded by Andy Oliver (ex-Nahm chef) and Tom George (previously a manager at Goodman Mayfair), this new permanent restaurant (taking over an old fabric warehouse, maintaining the rustic wood, industrial cast iron and bare brick) will continue to serve up little-known, authentic dishes from Northern and North Eastern Thailand, using the charcoal grills and wood-fired oven as they did in in their pop-up in Peckham and residency at London Field’s Climpson’s Arch.
Zima occupies the basement of a Grade-II listed townhouse on Frith Street, right next door to the legendary Ronnie Scott’s jazz club and below the French restaurant Jean Jacques. For the interior ‘think Russian dacha and Soviet-era ryumochnaya (vodka bar)’ – adorned with slogan-and-symbol-embossed propaganda porcelain. The site is the first venture for Zimin outside Russia, and will combine street and gourmet food in an array of tapas-style dishes featuring classic ingredients from all corners of Russia and the former Soviet Union. Dishes are prepared around ingredients, such as sturgeon, herring, scallops, crab, venison and, of course, caviar.
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Main image: The Harcourt