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Come what May, we've got the flavour of the month

What's on this May...

When planning your next restaurant visit, are you an Instagram scroller, do you give it a quick Google, or do you enjoy a leisurely weekend reading what the critics have been eating? It's fascinating to assess which platforms propel our clients' businesses and fill their restaurants with the right clientele, and it's an ever-changing landscape.

What can't be refuted though, is the kudos and gravitas generated by a positive write-up from a national restaurant critic, and we have loved seeing what Grace Dent, Giles Coren, Jimi Famurewa and Tim Hayward thought of our new openings Lahpet, Acme Fire Cult, Manthan, Dai Chi; and our much-loved Luca too.

You can read the full reviews below, all glowing of course. Here's to another bumper month of news, reviews and the subsequent rush to nab yourself a reservation. Enjoy!

SPRING ON A PLATE: 5 NEW DISHES WE LOVE

Spring can be a useful cue to try something new. Why not tuck into some brilliant dishes coming to the menus of our favourite restaurants this month?

Lobster roll at The Colony Grill Room

Luxurious lobster is at its very best at this time of year, and The Colony Grill Room at The Beaumont is celebrating it with a refined take on a Stateside classic. Executive chef Ben Boeynaems has created a dainty lobster roll, served in a brioche bun, topped with pickled onions and dill. The bite is served alongside a shellfish bisque flavoured with carrot and tarragon. Book your table here.

Plaa-style whole fried sea bass at Rosa's Thai

Inspired by its sister restaurant Lao Café, Rosa's Thai's new Isaan specials menu is a spicy celebration of Northern Thai cuisine. A highlight is this deep-fried whole sea bass served ‘Plaa-style’ with mango, cashew nut & red onion salad in roasted chilli oil, lemongrass, ginger & coconut milk. Tuck in at all Rosa’s Thai restaurants (excluding Westfield London and London Fields). Book here.

BBQ SRIRACHA special at Honest Burgers

This May, give into the spicy special at Honest Burgers. The BBQ SRIRACHA burger is a collaboration with Maker's Mark bourbon and Thiccc Sauce, and features Honest's British beef patty, candied bacon, double American cheese, Bourbon BBQ Sriracha sauce, crispy onions, confit garlic mayo, lettuce and pickles. Enjoy at all Honest restaurants from May 3rd to 30th.

Stewed chicken tacos at Decimiño

Soaking up the sun at The Rooftop at The Standard, London is joyous enough, but throw in tacos and margaritas on tap and you have yourself a party. Decimiño is the al fresco sibling of Peter Sanchez-Iglesias's Decimo. Book to enjoy dishes like these delectable stewed chicken tacos with pico de gallo, El Yucateco hot sauce and fresh lime served from the sky-high taco truck.

Trout kinilaw at Sarap

Fresh flavours are always the name of the game at Filipino restaurant Sarap, so expect a bounty of them this spring. A favourite new addition to the menu by chef Budgie Montoya is a delicate trout kinilaw: a take on a traditional Filipino ceviche-style dish, this plate features succulent cured fish, rhubarb, trout roe, coconut & cane vinegar. Book a table at the Heddon Street restaurant, and enjoy this and much more.

LATEST NEWS

Tutto launches in Brighton from the team behind Burnt Orange

Tutto, a new Italian restaurant from acclaimed restaurateur Razak Helalat of The Coal Shed, The Salt Room and Bib Gourmand-winning Burnt Orange, will launch in Brighton this June. At the helm in the kitchen will be Mirella Pau, whose previous roles include Head Chef at Padella and Café Murano. Set in a beautifully-restored 1930s former bank, Tutto's diners will be encouraged to "bring everyone, eat everything". Read more here.

Revolve launches on May 5th with menu of Parisian-inspired brasserie classics

Revolve, the lively new brasserie launching in the heart of the City, will open to the public on May 5th. The restaurant will serve French brasserie classics with a modern twist, including Dorset Escargots with Roasted Bone Marrow, Garlic Parsley Butter and Toasted Sourdough, and Beef tartare, marmite egg, Worcester sauce. The restaurant will soon launch a guest chef series featuring the likes of Lee Westcott and Gareth Ward. Book here.

Literary evenings return to The Beaumont with star line-up

The Beaumont's literary evenings are returning for 2022, with a line-up of some of Britain's brightest non-fiction writers. On May 16th, journalist Sam Knight will read from his novel The Premonitions Bureau (book your ticket here), followed by broadcaster and parliamentarian Melvyn Bragg reading from Back in the Day: A Memoir on June 20th. Novelist Kit de Waal, will read from Without Warning and Only Sometimes on September 13th.

Pastaio's slushy series is back for a seriously cool summer

From May 7th, Pastaio will bring back its hit series of slushies inspired by some of London’s coolest cocktail creators. First off, Pastaio has teamed up with flower bar My Lady Garden to create a Pink Gin and Raspberry Sorbet slushy, paired with a pink peppercorn caramelle pasta special. Later in summer, diners can also try slushy collaborations from coffee roasters Climpson & Sons, Burmese restaurant Lahpet, top cocktail bar Three Sheets and design studio Campbell-Rey. Book now at Soho or Westfield, and read more here.

L.A Brewery's Sparkling English Blush kombucha is the non-alc drink of the summer

L.A Brewery is a Suffolk-based non-alcoholic microbrewery and we're proudly launching their Sparkling English Blush kombucha. A combination of elderflower, floral notes and a hint of rhubarb results in a bright, fresh acidity and delicately dry fizz. The Blush is naturally low in sugar, vegan, gluten free and high in gut-friendly bacteria and is best enjoyed chilled as an apéritif. Pick up your bottle here.

The reviews are in... a critical success!

April was a bumper time for excellent reviews of our restaurant clients from the top critics in the business (including a double whammy from Dent). Take a look at some of our favourites below!

Grace Dent reviews Lahpet, The Guardian

"It’s a brave, but utterly welcome move to open a joint that serves lahpet thohk (tea-leaf salad) and a contemporary take on mohinga, a traditional rice-noodle fish soup, which here is delightfully spicy (they will warn you about that if you order it)...We also had all three of the grilled skewers, which are frankly incredible." Read the full review here.

Giles Coren reviews Manthan, The Times Magazine

"In no way at all is Manthan just a curry house, but it is definitely the best curry house in the world. Which is no surprise when you consider it is the latest manifestation of the genius of Rohit Ghai, the Punjabi chef initially behind Benares... then with front-of-house Abhi Sangwan, Jamavar, Bombay Bustle (a few doors down from Manthan) and the peerless Kutir in Chelsea." Read the full review here.

Jimi Famurewa reviews Acme Fire Cult x 40FT Brewery, Evening Standard

"It has the spirit, soul and craft of a serious restaurant, coupled with a vibrant, veg-heavy menu that feels like pyromaniacal Ottolenghi.... this is a venture that blazes with inventiveness and perhaps reframes what can be achieved gastronomically in a requisitioned patch of concrete." Read the full review here.

Tim Hayward reviews Luca, FT Weekend Magazine

"I mean... it's just not fair to offer people crispy sticks of cheese custard and expect them to restrain themselves. But this stunning tour de force was, it turned out, just a parlour trick compared to the main action. Few chefs can roast an Orkney scallop to keep an internal juiciness, even fewer might have the bright idea to smear it in n'duja..." Read the full review here.

Grace Dent reviews Dai Chi, The Guardian

"Every time I quibbled about something or other, another mouthful of something gorgeous on a stick turned up and I couldn’t fault the love, care and skill at play... A small plate of hamachi (amberjack) with truffle soy and furikake, came garnished with delicate shiso flower and was one of the loveliest, most fragrant, moreish plates of this particular fish I’ve ever had." Read the full review here.

CHEF SPOTLIGHT: SELIN KIAZIM

Selin Kiazim is chef-director of Oklava in Shoreditch, London, which she opened with her business partner Laura Christie in 2015.

Selin grew up in the kitchens of her mother and grandmother, which inspired in her a love for the food of her Turkish-Cypriot heritage. At Oklava, she melds her modern take on this culinary background with seasonal produce and a passion for all things smoke and fire, particularly drawing on the years spent working with Peter Gordon at The Providores and Tapa Room and then Kopapa.

She published her first cookbook, Oklava, in 2017, the same year in which she was one of four winning chefs on BBC’s Great British Menu. Her second cookbook, THREE, was published in October 2021.

Earlier this year, Selin and Laura also launched Quince & Co., a hospitality consultancy business that draws on their combined 32 years experience in the industry to support new and exciting UK hospitality concepts.

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