Tom and Ed Martin are no strangers to London’s dining scene, having opened The Botanist, The Jugged Hare, and gastropubs like The Gun and The Prince Arthur. But this is their most ambitious debut to date. One Canada Square is in the middle of one of the world’s greatest financial centers, and it’s obviously aimed at all those hard-working bankers and money wizards. In the lobby of the huge 50-story building on Canary Wharf, the classy-looking dining room comes from the well-known David Collins Studio, so it’s all columns, marbles, open plan and glass. The cooking is adventurous, moving from “The Allotment” (raw vegetables) and lobster bisque as a starter to a daily changing pie, market fish and a good grill. Mon.-Fri. 7am-midnight, Sat. 9am-midnight. One Canada Square, One Canada Square, London E14 5AB, 020-7559 5199.
Two of the city’s tucked-away favorites are Bleeding Heart and The Don Restaurant & Bistro, so this new wine bar from the savvy owners located right next door to The Don is a welcome addition. The Sign of The Don has two floors that operate as both wine bar and restaurant. Dishes range from fish soup to terrine, and confit suckling pig to steaks, with the odd, rather more exotic plates such as king prawns, chili and garlic cooked in sherry thrown into the mix. But it’s the wines that are the main focus, with an Enomatic system serving good selections by the glass. Mon.-Fri. noon-3pm, 6-10pm. The Sign of The Don, 21 St. Swithins Lane, London EC4N 8AD, 020-7242 2056.
In a search for ever-widening culinary horizons, London is currently venturing further afield. Restaurateur Arjun Waney and fellow businessman Tarun Mahrotri, who backed Roka and Zuma, began with Peruvian restaurant Coya, and now it’s Mexican with Peyote. The restaurant, which takes over the Aurelia space in Mayfair, is fun and eye-catching with odd lamps lighting up the décor of slate grey and dark woods. It’s situated on two floors: guests may head downstairs for the no-booking taco bar or dine upstairs on the likes of Chilean sea bass with cilantro and pineapple sauce as well as good tacos and quesadillas. There are 100 tequilas and mezcals and you can buy a bottle and store it there for future use. Mon.-Fri. noon-2.30pm, Mon.-Sat. 6-10.30pm. Peyote, 13 Cork St., London W1S 3NS, 020-7409 1300.
Following the takeover of what was the Chancery Court Hotel, the closing of Pearl and departure of chef Jun Tanaka is the opening of the newly refurbished property, now Rosewood London, and its restaurant Mirror Room, done in mirrors, dark wood and immaculately laid tables. The chef is none other than Swiss-born Bjorn van der Horst who set London talking during his time at The Greenhouse in Mayfair. He’s overseeing all the restaurants and bars at Rosewood London and will be providing everything from classics to burgers. Or you can pop in for afternoon tea. Daily noon-10.30pm. Mirror Room, Rosewood London, 252 High Holborn, London WC1V 7EN, 020-7781 8888.
The latest hot opening is from Jason Atherton in Ian Schrager’s new £33 million The London EDITION on Berners Street. The grand dining room, a trifle over-modestly called Berners Tavern, is all Edwardian wood, decorated plaster and glamor. Since Atherton left Gordon Ramsay two years ago he’s gone from second lieutenant to opening Pollen Street Social, Little Social and Social Eating House in London and branching out to the Far East. The cooking delivers modern European dishes such as scallop ceviche, avocado, radish, lettuce, jalapeño and lime ice for a starter, as well as the likes of halibut with squid ink risotto with garlicky squid and broccoli. Daily 7-10.30am, noon-2.30pm, 6-10.30pm. Berners Tavern, The London EDITION, 10 Berners St., London W1T 3NP, 020-7908 7979.
Claridge's Festive Afternoon TeaChef Shuffle
During the holiday season, Claridge's hosts a Festive Afternoon Tea from November 25, 2013-January 2, 2014. It features a choice from nearly 40 teas, as well as finger sandwiches, raisin and apple scones with Marco Polo jelly and Cornish clotted cream, pastries, stollen cake and Christmas cake. Tea costs £60 per person and is served with a glass of bubbly. Claridge's, Brook St., London W1K 4HR, 020-7107 8862.
British chef Simon Rogan is slated to take over the restaurant at Claridge’s vacated by Gordon Ramsay last June. Rogan is well known for his restaurant L’Enclume in Cartmel, Cumbria, the beautiful Lake District of England. He likes foraging and has his own farm, and should bring a breath of fresh air to this smart part of London. Claridge's Restaurant, Claridge's, Brook St., London, UK W1K 4HR, no phone.
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