The Henrietta hotel in London’s Covent Garden is to replace Ollie Dabbous’ restaurant with a new concept.
Owners the Experimental Group will open the 80-cover Henrietta Bistro in June in the ground floor restaurant and mezzanine space. It will be overseen by new head chef Sylvain Roucayrol, who previously worked at the group’s sister site Compagnie des Vins Surnaturels in Seven Dials.
The 18-bedroom hotel and Dabbous’ 40-cover restaurant opened in March 2017 and was Dabbous’ only operational restaurant following the closure of Dabbous and Barnyard last year until the launch of Hide last month.
Henrietta Bistro will serve a snacks and sharing plates menu inspired by southwest France, the Basque country and the Catalunyan region of northern Spain.
Roucayrol said: “Growing up in Perpignan, I was fortunate to experience the rich gastronomy and culture of both France and Catalunya, and I regularly visited Corsica for holidays with my family. The food of these regions is vibrant, colourful and perfect for sharing. I cannot wait to bring it to Henrietta.”
Guests will be able to choose from a selection of French pastis to share, served with piment d’Espelette (£7), or Getaria anchovies with housemade balsamic and chilli paste (£5).
As well as daily specials, larger dishes will include grilled Galician octopus with herb relish (£13); veal sweetbreads, nettles and vin jaune (£12); and asparagus with razor clams and wild garlic (£10).
Desserts will include crème Catalane (£7) and warm chocolate tart with Black Mountain whisky (£8). Lunch dishes will be similar and will all be priced under £11.
The bistro’s wine menu will focus on the Mediterranean region, and head bartender Zach Cadez has designed a summer cocktail menu to complement the new dishes. The venue will also offer a late night menu and cocktails until 1am.
Experimental Group co-founder Romée de Goriainoff said: “The new menu of small plates works just as well for a Monday lunch as it does for a leisurely dinner with family and friends. We wanted to create a fun, relaxed vibe that will heat up later on.”
The space will feature terracotta tiles, oak flooring and glass roofs, and a hand-painted mural of a tiger on the ceiling, with the design overseen by Dorothée Meilichzon.
The Experimental Group was founded in France in 2007 by de Goriainoff, Pierre-Charles Cros and Olivier Bon, with the launch of the Experimental Cocktail Club in Paris.
The group now has 18 hospitality businesses across Europe and the USA. Xavier Padovani joined the group in 2010 when the Experimental Cocktail Club opened in London’s Chinatown. It also owns the Chess Club private members’ club in Mayfair.