What: A chic neighbourhood-style restaurant on Bloomsbury Street that combines contemporary Mediterranean and Japanese cuisines.
Who: The Kitchens restaurant brand is operated by Edwardian Hotels, and currently encompasses four other sites: the London-based May Fair, Monmouth and Leicester Square Kitchens, and Peter Street Kitchen in Manchester.
The food: As with all restaurants under The Kitchens banner, Bloomsbury Street Kitchen serves a small-plates menu featuring a primary and secondary cuisine – in this case Mediterranean and Japanese respectively. Prices average between £10 to £15 (although some of the larger dishes cost upwards of £20), with guests encouraged to choose dishes from both the Eastern and Western sections of the menu (it’s not really fusion, because the two cuisines don’t meet on the plate). As such many of the dishes are quite light, and designed to complement each other.
On the menu: The Mediterranean selection features a sea bream carpaccio with Amalfi lemon and sweet apple; burrata with Seville orange, coriander seeds and mānuka honey; and a 28-day-aged rib-eye steak topped with gorgonzola butter. While the Japanese choice includes tuna sashimi with truffle ponzu mayonnaise; beef tartare with egg yolk and spicy shichimi soy; and sake-flamed black garlic king prawns with chilli and cumin. For guests who’d prefer a more focused dining experience, individual tasting menus for either cuisine are also available priced at £60, or £40 for the vegetarian option.
The vibe: With its design taking equal inspiration from Mediterranean gardens and the minimalist Japanese aesthetic, the restaurant features extensive plantings and exposed brickwork. It’s a bright and airy space with a stylish soundtrack and plenty of natural light that keeps things casual, without being overly informal. There are 74 covers in total split between a main dining room, a number of ‘semi-private’ dining tables, and a chef’s counter that allows guests to oversee the preparation of sashimi and tartare dishes. Additional seating is also available in the lounge bar and garden areas.
And another thing: Combining two cuisines on the menu is a feature across all Kitchens, with the primary offering at a new restaurant always becoming the secondary option for the next one. For example: the group’s previous opening, Peter Street Kitchen, was heavily led by the Japanese side of the menu, explaining its inclusion in a smaller capacity on the Bloomsbury Street menu. Other combinations include Italian and Spanish cuisine at May Fair Kitchen; and Mexican and Peruvian at the Leicester Square Kitchen.
9-13 Bloomsbury St, Bloomsbury, London WC1B 3QD