Patrick Powell, formerly head chef of the Chiltern Firehouse, will launch new restaurant Allegra in Manhattan Loft Gardens in Stratford, London.
The fine dining ‘destination restaurant’ will feature both an a la carte offering and an eight-course tasting menu in the dining room designed by Space Copenhagen, who previously worked on Noma among others.
Head chef Powell has previously served under Derry Clarke at Dublin’s L’Ecrivian, Anthony Demetre at Wild Honey and Nuno Mendes.
Manhattan Loft Gardens is the brain-child of developer Harry Handelsman, who also worked on the Chiltern Firehouse and the St Pancras Hotel. It will comprise the Stratford hotel, three sky gardens a brasserie and private club as well as Allegra, and he described it as his “most ambitious project to date”.
He added: “Like many of my other developments, I want to put Stratford on the map. I chose a great architect to design a great building. Inspired by the River Café, I felt that Manhattan Loft Gardens needs a truly wonderful restaurant to make it a destination.
“I was looking for a chef that would understand this vision, and would fully commit to the project and make Allegra their own. Patrick, who I knew well from Chiltern Firehouse, I thought would fit the bill, and having collaborated with him over the past 18 months, that impression is fully justified. I look forward to seeing the space come alive with diners and guests.”
The restaurant will focus on ingredients from the Full Circle farm in Kent, which is owned by Handelsman. Dishes will include starters of Mackerel tartare with salted cucumber, buttermilk & apple; Grilled asparagus with hand-picked crab, pistachio and ginger; and Smoked eel pie with parsley sauce.
Mains will include suckling pig with swede cake, peanut, mustard fruit and sage; confit sea trout, soft herbs, pickled radish and smoked broth; and pot roasted summer cabbage, potato and baked cheese.
Powell said: ‘When I first began working with Harry on the plans for Allegra, we both agreed we wanted the restaurant to be more than a place to eat – it needed to be a place for fun, good conversation and to be enjoyed in good company. We want people to be able to visit for a cocktail and stay long into the evening, looking out over the best views of London.
“Of course, being lucky enough to source our ingredients from our own farm is every chef ’s dream, and the whole team are excited to eventually be able to work in a farm to fork style. The menu has been honed tirelessly, and most of the dishes are a product of over a year of rigorous recipe testing and development.
“We’ll be evolving with the seasons but I’m really excited about the food we’re opening the restaurant with – it showcases the flair, hard work and creativity of our kitchen. Excellent hospitality, in every sense of the word, has always been at the core of what I love, and it’s certainly at the heart of this building. The space will truly come alive when we welcome our guests – that’ the most exciting part for me.”