On the table: HIDE
Author: Emily Holden
The name HIDE is echoed in the restaurant’s sleek exterior, sitting on the corner of Piccadilly and Clarges Street like a modern architectural show home, offering tantalising glimpses of the warm glow inside. It’s only when you spot the sunken “HIDE” lettering disappearing into the dark façade you know that you are definitely in the right place; the subtle design on the wall is actually the restaurant’s front door.
All in all, not easy to find – but that shouldn’t be a problem for HIDE, the second restaurant from super-star chef Ollie Dabbous, whose first restaurant “Dabbous” quickly gained a stellar reputation (and a Michelin star) before closing its doors last year.
But Ollie is back, and back he is with a bang. HIDE is nothing if not impressive – from its imposing exterior and its iPad wine list, to the three floors it occupies, each offering something different: “Above” is where guests can enjoy tasting menus with views over Green Park, “Ground” serves à la carte dining in casual surroundings, and “Below” is home to the most instagrammed staircase in London, leading you down to an atmospheric cocktail bar.
The food. The food is very impressive too – from the wafer-thin charcuterie platter (the goose with sage and fenugreek was new to me, and absolutely delicious), to the relatively traditional mains (try the spiced quail, or the grilled octopus artfully served on a beautiful bed of grapes and lovage), right through to rather more unusual sheepsmilk ice cream with fresh sorrel juice for dessert – everything was faultless. Even the humble malted rye bread roll drew a surprising amount of admiration from the table.
We dined in “Ground”, at a cosy round table, with one of our party sitting in a wooden rocking chair. Initially this was somewhat disconcerting, but after a glass or two of Etna Bianco we were all asking to swap so we could enjoy the soothing rocking motion, which seemed so conducive to good conversation. So enjoyable was the experience, in fact, that after our second bottle of wine – a Willamette Pinot Noir – we decided we still weren’t ready to leave. We descended the glorious wooden staircase into the depths of the bar “Below”, where we enjoyed some expertly created Old Fashioneds and continued to appreciate the ambience well into the night.
For more information, visit the HIDE website