SMITH & WOLLENSKY
American steakhouse chain Smith & Wollensky opened in the historic Grade II-listed Adelphi Building off the Strand in June. Spread over two floors, it houses three private dining rooms catering for 22-60 guests, including the Teddy Roosevelt Room, which comes complete with its own bar and dedicated bartender. Steaks are chosen from the top two per cent of beef produced in the US and the restaurant has its own dry-ageing room and a butchery on site.
Gordon Ramsay opened not one, but two new restaurants in Chelsea this spring. Maze Grill Park Walk was launched in April on the former site of Aubergine, followed closely by Maze Grill Royal Hospital Road in May, where Foxtrot Oscar, another of his restaurants, once stood. Both specialise in rare-breed prime steaks and sushi and sashimi dishes are made to order at the raw bar. The restaurants can be booked exclusively for events and have 60 and 55 covers respectively.
West End establishment The Ivy reopened in June sporting a new decor. Original features including the wood-panelling and harlequin-stained glass windows have been enhanced with contemporary additions such as silver, mirrored panels and a central dining bar seating 20. The private dining room can host up to 60 guests for dinner, or 100 for cocktails and canapes.
The nautical-themed Columbia restaurant, terrace and bar was launched at Doubletree by Hilton London Docklands Riverside in July as part of the hotel's multi-million-pound renovation. Guests step off a boat onto the hotel's own private pier leading up to Columbia and admire views across the river while choosing from the nautically-inspired menu. It can be hired privately for 12-250 guests.
MORDEN & LEA
Chef Mark Sargeant's latest project opened in Soho in June, named after the two cartographers who mapped the Soho area in the 17th century. A brasserie-style menu is available in the 86-cover restaurant upstairs, while a more casual sharing menu is on offer in the 62-cover space downstairs.
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