In a leafy setting, a beautiful collection of traditional Georgian townhouses hides a modern hotel gem: The Hempel.
We began the evening with a cocktail served in the idyllic gardens by an incredibly charming barman. Filled to the brim with alcoholic fruits, dinner started with a bang. We were then led through the very modern, minimalist hotel to the restaurant, No. 35 Restaurant at The Hempel.
The restaurant itself is small and intimate, although the room appears to have two distinct personalities with one area lit in pink with more of a party feel, opposed to the naturally lit, windowed area in keeping with the architecture you expect from the building. This was definitely my preferred spot, although depending on your group, you may want to try either.
The website boasts a ‘high pedigree provenance offer[ing] the best of British and European ingredients’ and a chat with Head Chef Mike Carter certainly seals this as authentic. He is passionate about his suppliers, and goes to great lengths to ensure that the lives of the stock he serves are as close to perfection as possible.
We started with Heirloom tomato salad and Scallops, which were abundant in colour and prettiness. They were delicious, and very clean dishes, leading on well to the much more macho main courses. The star of the show was undeniably the Welsh Grain Poussin served both poached and confit with the depth of flavour in the meat signalling Carter’s passionate and skilled sourcing. The Rump of Rhug Estate Lamb was beautifully cooked and a succulent, juicy cut on a fresh bed of spring veg.
Puds were good, although not having a sweet tooth means I lean towards cheese and crackers every time, and the selection on offer at The Hempel was delicious, with a creative selection of accompaniments. A luxuriant truffle honey was a beautiful finale to a rather elegant and accomplished meal.
The Hempel is a great space, where quality and passion shine through the drinks and the food, and if you get a sunny day and can enjoy the gardens too, it’s a space which would be hard to beat.
Address: 31-35 Craven Hill Gardens, London, W2 3EA
Phone: +44 207 298 9000
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