A great many amazing things have been produced in Ottolenghi’s kitchens.
And perhaps the best is insanely talented chef Ramael Scully.
You see, soon after arriving in the UK after cooking down under in Sydney, Scully started work in the kitchens at Ottolenghi, going on to become the creative force behind much of the menu as head chef of NOPI when it opened back in 2011. And, with this St. James’s Market spot (boasting neighbours like West African fine dining spot Ikoyi and Nordic eatery Aquavit), now he’s the one whose name is above the door.
Walk in, and you’ll be instantly struck (figuratively, relax) by the illuminated wall of house-jarred preserves, spice mixes, syrups, pickles, and steeped fruit, none of them is purely decorative either: you’ll frequently see chefs pop out from behind the open kitchen to grab something. That open kitchen is surrounded by a marble-topped bar, which in turn is surrounded by a dozen or so sleek wooden tables and leather-backed chairs.
The food on offer doesn’t really subscribe to any particular culinary tradition, but rather draws from Scully’s own family heritage, which stretches from Ireland to Bali. Which basically means you’ll find dishes ranging from candied butternut with cabbage samba and apple shrub; to octopus with salt-baked avocado and black garlic; to beef short rib pastrami with horseradish & pistachio, in a constantly evolving menu.
Sitting opposite that marble dining bar there’s an actual bar from which they’re making cocktails, frequently with ingredients used in the kitchen (so as to reduce waste and create a good flavour-pairing with the dishes on the menu). You can expect the likes of their turmeric & pandan ‘Light & Stormy’, made with white rum, or their surprisingly zingy Bloody Shiraz Gin Negroni.
Which sounds bloody good.
NOTE: Scully is due to open on Thursday March 1st. You can find out more, and make a booking right HERE.
Scully | 4 St. James’s Market, SE1Y 4QU
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