The Cavendish, Marylebone
Ruby Munson Hirst visits this well known London eatery.
Nestled under the historic buildings of Cavendish Street, The street’s namesake restaurant is an understated but refined new bar and eatery that will not disappoint. On a cold, late November evening, Riddle meandered from St Christopher’s Square to the corner restaurant, where drinkers enjoyed cocktails, al fresco – cosy despite the cold, with the aid of blankets and heaters provided outside number 35.
Inside, a hustle of guests flurried around the long, steel bar which acted as something of a stage to the charming mixologists who performed with humour and skill. Whether you are dining or just having a quick drink, the staff here make you feel like you are the most important person in the room.
At the bar, we enjoyed fresh and zesty Aperol Spritz before devouring perfectly curated G&Ts. Dinner was served upstairs in the quieter, more formal of the two rooms. The simple and clean decor is reflected on a menu which distinguishes this venue from others in its orbit. Our wine choices were made by a sommelier who insisted that the organic Italian Catarratto (Barone Montalto) and the Salice Salentino would be the right accompaniments. The choices proved solid, both the white and the red turning out to be excellent matches for our food.
Before our starters, Oysters caught in Carlingford Lough set the tone for the evening, being fresh, flavoursome and delicately presented. For starters, we shared tender scallops with smoked cauliflower purée which were succulent and rich. The Rainbow Beetroot Carpaccio was an excellent accompaniment, packing light and sweet flavours which typified the menu’s versatility. This was easily the most beautifully presented dish of the evening, and I would have eaten it twice just to enjoy the vegetable geometrics and rainbow colours again.
For my main course, I opted for secreto (Iberian Pork Shoulder) which was marinated delicately in smoked garlic and butter. Tender grilled asparagus was all that was needed to accompany the dish, and the combination of meatiness and crunchy vegetables was exactly right.
The dessert menu presented a more elaborate selection of options, and reignited the excitement we felt on arrival. Unable to choose just one, we opted for three desserts: caramel panna cotta, pineapple ravioli with pistachio crumble and cheesecake, and brownie with chocolate mousse. Each was perfectly formed and offered something entirely different from the other. If you ever visit The Cavendish make room for all three. The pineapple ravioli was a bonkers creation that demonstrated true culinary flare.
The Cavendish is keen to prove itself as a master of service, food and drink, and pulls off all three with class and refinement. Every morsel was delivered with care and precision. This is a one to watch, as establishments that show this prowess on every level tend to improve further with time. The only danger is, the atmosphere and understated glamour of the food and drink may just seduce you into staying longer than you’d hoped.
Enquiries: The Cavendish, 35 New Cavendish Street, Marylebone, London W1G 9TR / 020 7487 3030/ http://35newcavendish.co.uk