Opening under the direction of head chef Sandy Jarvis, the restaurant will be located on the first floor of the four-storey building, which dates back to 1884 and is named after Nicholas Culpeper, a seventeenth-century English herbalist.
It will serve a seasonal menu of starters, mains and deserts such as red wine braised squid with lemon, garlic and parsley; crispy lamb breast with parsnip, anchovy and mint salad; and poached blood orange with cardamom salted granola and ricotta. There will also be sharing plates for two or more, such as a 400g veal chop from the Ginger Pig with sage, lemon and butter.
Jarvis, who was previously head chef at Terroirs, also oversees the daily changing menu in the pub on the ground floor, which was opened by owners Nico Teguer, Gareth Roberts and Bash Redford in June.
“Essentially the restaurant will be a slightly more formal version of the pub downstairs,” explained Redford.
“We will have a really simple but constantly changing seasonal menu with three starters, three mains, three sharing plates and three desserts. Whereas downstairs we always have a chop and a pie of some sorts, things we deem to be good traditional pub fayre, upstairs will have more interesting dishes.”
In keeping with the pub downstairs, the restaurant will offer a natural wine list as well as cocktails based on herbs grown on the roof and a range of draught and bottled beers.
The restaurant is the second phase of the Culpeper project, which began when Teguer, Roberts and Redford, who have a passion for renovation and design, fell in love with the dilapidated Princess Albert pub and its fourth floor rooftop.
“The whole thing revolves around the rooftop, where we grow a significant amount of herbs and vegetables. That is the reason we got the building and came together as business partners,” explained Redford.
“Our vision was to have a pub, restaurant and hotel, all of which are bound together by the roof. We want everything to be very good value, very honest and very unpretentious, but very good quality.”
He added that The Culpeper has enjoyed ‘overwhelming’ local support since opening eight months ago.
“I was mildly concerned that we would be tarred with the gentrification brush. But I think we transformed the pub in such a way that there was quite an instant local pride and people just want to be involved,” he said.
“We try and make sure we have something for everyone. We always have a lunch special on for £5-6.60, which means that every day, without fail, you can come and eat here for under a tenner and it will be exactly the same quality food as the rest of the menu.
“We also have a whole roster of events for local residents planned for the roof with our grower Jack, who is going to teach people how to grow vegetables and herbs.”
The next phase of the project will see five hotel rooms open on the second floor. “They are really beautifully decorated and the quality of all the fixtures and fittings is exactly the same as the rest of the pub but they will be reasonably priced - cheaper than a night in the Ibis down the road,” said Redford.