Restaurant: Jar Kitchen
Where is it: Drury Lane, Covent Garden
Opened: March 2015
What kind of food: Seasonal and locally-sourced ingredients are transformed into British dishes with a twist – thanks to Head Chef Dominik Moldenhauer’s previous positon at experimental and number one-ranking restaurant, Heston Blumenthal’s Diner.
Who goes: The restaurant’s owners Lucy Brown, 30, and Jenny Quintero, 28, are old friends who cut their career teeth as a model agent and a publishing manager respectively, so expect fashionistas and media types at Jar Kitchen.
The concept: The all-day dining restaurant promises to make (almost) everything on site from absolute scratch, from the granola served up for breakfast to the ginger beer-base in the cocktails. The vibe is relaxed and fun, “We wanted to create a restaurant where we would want to go to - the perfect place to relax, have fun with friends and eat quality, freshly prepared food,” explains co-founder Lucy Brown.
The interiors: Set over two floors the stripped back restaurant serves up to 50 covers on reclaimed, relaxed wood tables and benches. And, in keeping with the name, there are a lot of jars being put to use, from drinks vessels to light fixtures.
We tried: Pan seared Sea bass with avocado, fennel, seeds and Ox cheek & cheddar croquettes with aioli to start; followed by Walter Rose pork belly, peas, lentils, turnips, scratching and hazelnut crumble and the Walter Rose lamb rump with parsnip purée, beets, lemon thyme jus. For dessert, the Tonka Bean Ice cream with rhubarb, JK honey comb, bee pollen and sorrel (and two spoons).
Hero Dishes: The Tonka bean dessert was by far the most unusual dish on the menu. The staff informed us that the Tonka bean is actually banned in the U.S. due to its “hallucinogenic” properties. Rest assured, the amount they use in the dessert need not come with a warning.
And the drinks: A small, but well thought out, wine list of old and new world wines, craft beers, a few select cocktails and coffee from neighbours Monmouth.
Star Cocktail: Not entirely sure it was on the menu, but they make a mean Aperol Spritz.
Best for: After work supper with girlfriends or an early pre-theatre supper (5.30-6:30pm).
Our favourite thing about it was: Dishes beautifully presented and inventive, servied up in a chilled, unpretentious environment.
The Small Print: The service was very slow but having only been open a few weeks they’re probably still finding their feet.