Grace Dent ‘Each dish is some­thing an anti-hero in a Bret Eas­ton El­lis novel would or­der’

The Guardian - Feast - - Feast -

Some restau­rants pro­voke an ex­is­ten­tial cri­sis. Yes, I know it’s just din­ner. But din­ner is my job, and some evenings re­mind me I could be run­ning a cat or­phan­age in Udaipur, or some­thing use­ful.

Rather than, say, vis­it­ing a restau­rant that serves tiny tastes of “bit­ter herbs, parme­san, an­chovy”. Plus, ex­actly 15 other teensy dishes such as “hal­ibut with el­der­flower” or “squid with san­dal­wood”. Each con­coc­tion off­putting, but hewn to test bound­aries. Each rem­i­nis­cent of some­thing an anti-hero in a Bret Eas­ton El­lis novel would or­der.

Gazelle in May­fair is a very, very cool new restau­rant and bar over two floors, where the vibe is ex­per­i­men­tal and gas­tro­nom­i­cally chal­leng­ing. And also lux­u­ri­ous. The room is ac­cessed by a pri­vate lift. The ban­quettes are red and gold vel­vets. It is a col­li­sion be­tween Tony Conigliaro, one of Lon­don’s most ven­er­ated bar own­ers, and a Fer­ran Adrià-linked chef called, rather ma­jes­ti­cally, Rob Roy Cameron. Conigliaro and Cameron’s last en­deav­our was the pi­o­neer­ing, ever-puz­zling, be­yond-par­ody cock­tail bar in Hack­ney called – or not called – Un­ti­tled. It’s a bar where a cock­tail such as the “Vi­o­lin” con­tains dark oak, pine, beeswax and the tree bark resin ben­zoin. Food ○○

At­mos­phere ○○○

Ser­vice ○

48 Albe­marle Street, Lon­don W1S 4DH, 020-7629 0236, gazelle­may­fair.com. Open Mon-Sat 12pm-2.30pm, 6pm -10pm. About £75 a head plus drinks and ser­vice.

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