27a Hay’s Mews,
London, W1J 5NX
Tel. 020 7499 3331
Food type: Modern French
Food rating: 6/10
Nearest tube: Green Park
Website: The Greenhouse
It is great to be done with my exams. Now, whether I have done enough to avoid the dreaded resits is another question altogether. In the mean time, all I can do is sit back and enjoy the excellent weather whilst doing a bit of eating in between.
Greenhouse restaurant closed for a complete refurbishment in 2008 only to emerge with an impressive decor. The restaurant takes its name literally with a short walk through a short walk through a ‘garden’. A beige grey background in the dining room is highlighted by some wooden branches adorning the wall alongisde the olive green coloured chairs. This culinary instituition first won a Michelin star way back in 1996 when it could count Gary Rhodes as one of its alumni.
Head chef Antonin Bonnet has trained with the biggest names in the industry including the legendary Michel Bras and Marco Pierre White (you know back when he wasn’t a complete sell-out). Bonnet started off his culinary odyssey at the age of 14 at Boneveine Hotel’s cooking school. Unlike many French chefs, Bonnet is well travelled both around Europe as well as the Far East which is reflected in his use of many Asian ingredients and flavours in his cooking. Following the departure of Bjorn van der Horst in 2006 (who would subsequently join the Ramsay stable with the ill-fated La Noisette and most recently is head chef at Eastside Inn), Bonnet was appointed as head chef and successfully held on to the restaurant’s Michelin star.
The menu reads like a dream with plenty of interesting and tempting choices. 3 Courses are priced at £65 while an 8 course tasting menu is £80. Of course, the menu is also highlighted with some daily specials which changes every day giving regular diners something new to look forward. During the week, lunch is £29 for 3 courses with a guarantee that it will be served within 1 hour. I think it is worth mentioning here that the restaurant has one of the most substantial and comprehensive wine lists in London with over 3,000 bins and over 50 wines available by the glass including a 1997 Y’quem at £37. You will most certainly drink well here.