From long-awaited re-openings to fresh arrivals, these are London’s new restaurants and menus to seek out this summer.
Anthony Demetre’s cuisine meets its match in the grand dining room at Wild Honey’s new Pall Mall home, while Jason Atherton moves his focus onto seasonal British dishes with the launch of No 5 Social in Mayfair. Elsewhere, a comforting evening menu of home-style cooking is on offer from 26 Grains in Neal’s Yard and the temperature is rising in the kitchen of Michelin-starred Spanish chef Quique Dacosta’s first British venture, Arros QD in Fitzrovia.
The outcry surrounding Wild Honey’s closure soon turned to joy at the news it would reopen at a Pall Mall address. The much-lauded institution has quickly settled into its new home with its full-height windows and parquet floors creating a sense of grandeur – the perfect backdrop to chef Anthony Demetre’s dramatic dishes. His signature Marseillaise Bouillabaisse is an extravagant shellfish medley (for two, £32 per person) and the Paris-Brest is as decadent a patisserie you’ll find this side of the Channel.
16-22 Great 8 Pall Mall, St. James’s, SW1, wildhoneystjames.co.uk
Jason Atherton has relaunched Little Social as No 5 Social, switching the French fare to strictly seasonal dishes from closer to home. The menu showcases native ingredients like Herdwick lamb and Hebridean halibut, as well as vegetarian and vegan options and rhubarb wine cocktails – helping rethink modern British in the heart of Mayfair.
5 Pollen Street, Mayfair, W11, no5social.com
Craving home-style cooking? Well, look no further than the new evening offering at Neal’s Yard-based café 26 Grains. Come 6pm, Wednesday to Saturday, the lights dim and diners lucky enough to bag a seat are treated to a pared-back, weekly-changing set menu (always including a fresh pasta main). It makes for a liberating lack of choice and fuels an intimate, family-dining feel.
1 Neal’s Yard, Covent Garden, WC2, 26grains.com
It doesn’t get much more Gallic than the escargots, Bayonne ham or “Tarte du Jour” at Les Platanes. Based just off Berkeley Square, the high-end French bistro makes a top lunch spot, as well as a delightful setting for romantic evenings with wild sea bass in salt crust (£55, two to share) along with a glass or two of the Champagne Collet.
26-28 Bruton Place, Mayfair, W1, lesplatanes.co.uk
Banish any preconceptions of paella before heading to Arros QD, Michelin-starred Spanish chef Quique Dacosta’s first UK venture. His reinterpretation of traditional rice dishes are cooked a la llama (to the flame) with cuttlefish, tiger prawn, monkfish andńoras aioli-filled paella pans presented to the table still sizzling.
Launching this summer as part of The Colony Club, 24 Mayfair brings a fabulous mix of retro Hollywood decor and Japanese gastronomy to central London. The members’ club will be open all-hours: a haven of vibrant plush velvet and tarnished golds, coppers and bronzes, with exotic cocktails, Maria Grachvogel-designed staff uniforms and a glass-encased teppanyaki bar to match.