Greek and Eastern Mediterranean restaurant Ampéli has opened in Fitzrovia, London, offering a selection of dishes inspired by founder Jenny Pagoni’s native homeland of Greece and its neighbouring cultures.
Head chef is Oren Goldfield, who prior to joining Ampéli led the kitchen at Queenswood in Battersea. He also has experience at Tel Aviv’s Toto restaurant.
Goldfield has worked with Pagoni to recreate her favourite family recipes and Greek dishes. They include barrel-aged feta saganaki with cherry tomato jam, pan-fried Welsh lamb sweetbreads with Jerusalem mixed spice and loukoumades, doughnuts with Greek mountain tea syrup.
Pagoni said: “After moving to London in 2004, I found that what I missed most about my home in Athens was the food and wines. My grandmother is an amazing cook and a wonderful host, and good food shared with friends and family has been a part of my life since childhood.
"Greek wine is currently undergoing an exciting renaissance so I’m really looking forward to introducing some completely new wines to London. Ampéli will be a place for people to gather and drink something new they might never have tasted, and share dishes that reflect the diversity of the Eastern Mediterranean.”
Greek Master of Wine Yiannis Karakasis has curated a wine list that champions celebrated Hellenic produce. Guests will be able to spend an evening sampling retsina, xinomavro and the popular Assyrtiko, a white wine indigenous to the island of Santorini.
The restaurant is spread across three floors with light olive-green walls that deliberately reference the olive groves of Greece.
Pagoni was born and raised in Athens and moved to the UK in 2004. The name Ampéli is Greek for vineyard.