sketch - London
sketch's manifesto reaches great heights with its extravagant bars and restaurants making up what is central Mayfair's biggest endeavor yet. The different instalments flow organically throughout the building - The Gallery, Lecture Room, Parlour, Glade and East Bar all consists of their own theme and whole-heartedly dedicated spaces with different atmospheres.
We made a reservation for the singular afternoon tea craze restaurant The Gallery. This food haven is pampered with velvety pinkish bliss, dome topped high ceilings and walls serenaded by David Shrigley's witty art works. 239 of his works line the restaurant's walls, forming the largest group of original drawings the artist has ever exhibited. David Shrigley had actually revamped sketch's walls as part of a long-term program of artist-conceived restaurants. The Gallery follows the huge success of artist Martin Creed's restaurant commission at sketch in 2012.
The iconic Gallery room has a selection of different menus to choose from. We had the Champagne Afternoon Tea, this included a fine selection of caviar and quail eggs, dozens of finger-sized sandwiches, an assortment of specially baked cakes, scones and jam with a Pommery Rosé to accompany the meal. There is no need to pick and choose from the Afternoon Tea menu as all the treats are yours to eat!
We especially loved the mozzarella and pesto panini and smoked salmon and Jacob's tarragon cream for starters. Served from the trolley, we had a tempting choice between two Battenburg cakes: raspberry, coconut and passion fruit or the chocolate, vanilla and caramel cake. Additionally, the selection of petit gateaux was endless, from fig cheesecakes to Malabar marshmallows. At the end of the meal, there were dozens of teas and infusions to choose from.
The atmosphere was quite relaxing, even with the fast paced waiters serving everyone frequently. Drinks were continuously topped up, sandwich platters replaced with more upon orders, music was played in the background and the classic, almost bourgeois design invites a deliberately playful contrast with the witty, outré artworks which adds to the atmosphere. The opening hours are from 12:30pm to 4:30pm (Mon-Sun) and dinner from 6:30pm to 2am (Mon-Sat) and 6:00pm to 12am (Sundays). We heard there is a lot of eye candy for dinner; fois gras (Périgord), steak tartare, lamb chops and more delicious selections, in addition to live DJ's on a weekender.
Curiously and not a secret anymore, the toilets have different egg-shaped pods for your privacy, in which you feel as though you are in a 70's science fiction dystopia or like you are about to skyrocket into outer space!
We loved our experience in sketch and would recommend everyone to try the most quintessential of English custom. This is a fashionable event, in which families, friends and tourists can all happily enjoy a lavish experience in London.
sketch | 5 bars & restaurants | General hours: Monday to Friday From 8:00 - 2:00 (after midnight) / Saturday 10:00 - 2:00 (after midnight) / Sunday from 10:00 - 24:00 | | London, UK | Street - 9 Conduit St, London W1S 2XG | Tlf: +44 20 7659 4500 | firstname.lastname@example.org | www.sketch.london