London’s Mandarin Oriental has, finally, had some good news.
After almost burning down in 2018, then having the covid fairy permanently close the excellent Bar Boulud this summer, things could certainly have been better. And now at last, they are. Because word on the street is that The Aubrey is moving in to take over the space left by Boulud.
The Mandarin Oriental over in Hong Kong already has a branch of The Aubrey in it, which it describes as an ‘eccentric Japanese izakaya experience’. The brand is the work of a company called Maximal Concepts, whose whole philosophy seems to be about creating upscale Asian restaurant experiences that have a sense of fun about them (and also appear to win a few awards, at least as far as their website is concerned). And The Aubrey seems to provide exactly that.
How will that translate over here? Well, the space it’s moving into is – understatement alert – quite nice, and presumably is only going to be made nicer by their efforts. If the menu stays true to the HK original, then we can expect the likes of high-end sushi, tempura, and flame-kissed protein from a robata grill. The kind of ingredients they’re currently showcasing include A3 wagyu beef, Hokkaido king crab, Iberico pork, and Pacific lobster, but then, this is the Mandarin Oriental, so it’s par for the course.
The Aubrey also has a particularly good line in cocktails, offering an ‘Omakase Cocktail Experience’ in which a series of expertly crafted drinks are made for you based on your personal flavour preferences, all at a separate 4-person bar. Whether or not they decide to bring that over here remains to be seen.
One thing’s for sure though – given that the Mandarin’s other restaurant is Dinner by Heston, they’re definitely going be bringing their A-game.
NOTE: The Aubrey is set to open in early 2022. We’ll be back then with the full scoop. In the meantime, you can find out more at their website right HERE.
The Aubrey | Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park, 66 Knightsbridge, SW1X 7LA
Want to meet the neighbours? Head in to Dinner by Heston.