What: A creative fine-dining, low waste restaurant on the ground floor of White Lyan’s former Hoxton Street site (cocktail bar Super Lyan continues to operate below). There’s small plates, unusual ingredients, and an unorthodox serving order.
Who: The bar-restaurant hybrid is the result of a collaboration between Ryan Chetiyawardana (the cocktail supremo otherwise known as ‘Mr Lyan’) and Doug McMaster of zero-waste Brighton restaurant SILO. Also fronting the project is Dr Arielle Johnson, Noma’s former resident scientist and MAD Symposium’s head of research.
The vibe: Breaking down barriers between food and drink in terms of both menu and interior design, the pass is shared by the bar and kitchen, with cocktails and courses being prepared together. Tables and bar tops are made from recycled yoghurt pots as a nod to SILO’s waste-not-want-not credentials. Dining booths are raised, placing the bar as centre-stage of the room, which has been designed by Juliet Walmsley.
The menu: There are no starters or mains here, and menu descriptions don’t give much away as to how the ingredients might have been treated. A plate of green tomato, pine-brined with white peach complements a Belvedere, greengage and chamomile and cider vermouth cocktail, with the salinity of the brine balancing the white peach’s sweetness. A ‘shrooms on shrooms’ dish gets the maximum mileage out of king oyster mushrooms by serving them raw, brined, grilled and fermented into paste. Plates are small, and are served as a £45 set menu of three dishes and four drinks, with options of off-menu extras (£4 to £12 for food; £5 to £12 for drinks; £7 for a glass of wine). In a break from tradition, the unusual and cryptically named courses on the set menu are not paired with the drinks, but served one after the other: some are food, some are drink, and some are a mixture of the two. Look out for unusual ingredients, such as Japanese knotweed – here’s hoping he’s using this notoriously quick spreading plant wisely - compost smoked carrots, and water jelly.
And another thing: Diners are unwittingly taking part in an experiment when they eat at Cub. The space forms its own ecosystem and ingredients are grown on site as part of a research program into effects of the environment on food flavour.
155 Hoxton Street, London N1 6PJ