Hempel Hotel

No 35 at The Hempel

Open for breakfast Mon–Fri 7am–10am; Sat–Sun 7am–11.30am; dinner Mon–Sat 6.30pm–10pm

Located just off the gorgeously lit, marble lobby of Anouska Hempel’s luxuriously minimalist five-star hotel in a residential street close to Hyde Park, No 35 is a smartly-dressed restaurant, including tables set with plates decorated by artist Yasmin Sandytia. We took a table by the window looking onto the leafy Zen Garden (where the wedding took place in Notting Hill) and checked out the mainly hotel-staying diners – there were two women whose black-and-white shoes matched the hotel’s colour scheme, a mother and young daughter and a number of suits. ‘Hotel restaurants always attract a weird crowd,’ the boyf said. Admittedly, there was a lone diner checking his Blackberry.

Mike Carter’s seasonal menu makes the most of British and European ingredients which are sourced from handpicked independent suppliers. Freshly cut wholemeal bread, an amuse bouche of sweet potato mousse and tangy stilton on a biscuity walnut base, and a glass of Bourgogne (£7.50) kicked off our meal.

I started with a colourful heritage beetroot salad with Innes goat’s cheese, hazelnut, dandelion and nasturtium (£8.50) while the boyf had a ‘very good’ Colchester crab ravioli with spiced shellfish cappuccino, leek and lemon (£9.50). He enjoyed a main of ‘really tender’ organic rump of Rhug Estate lamb, which came with wild garlic (which had just come out with the warmer weather) plus swiss chard, pumpkin puree, lamb boulangère potato (£19.50) while my taleggio tart with roasted winter vegetable salad (£17) is sadly, probably off the menu by now. ‘Best dessert,’ the waiter said confidently, with regards to our choice of baked apple tarte tartin with ice cream (for two; £9). The tartin arrived in a copper pan drenched in a yummy caramel sauce – the waiter was probably right.

With its elegant decor, chilled soundtrack, sleek service and excellent menu, No 35 probably deserves to attract a cooler crowd.

No 35 at The Hempel, 31–35 Craven Hill Gardens, London, W2; www.the-hempel.co.uk/hyde-park-restaurant; 020 7298 9000

Restaurants |