As you might have suspected, one of London’s best gardens has a little addition.
The plot thickens.
The garden in question is the newly refurbed Garden Museum (a de-consecrated and rescued church, complete with medieval tower and between two and five unexpected late Archbishops under the floor), and the addition is housed within a gloriously sleek glass and beaten bronze pavilion jutting out from it. And this eatery is a solid
step leap up from your typical museum restaurant. Salvaged gravestones punctuate the smooth cement flooring; the building is sandwiched between two newly designed gardens, and at the end there’s an intimate al fresco dining terrace, with views of the Thames beyond.
The kitchens are helmed by chefs Harry Kaufman (Lyle’s, St. John) and George Ryle (Padella, Primeur); a joint CV that’s exactly as promising as it sounds. Taking inspiration from their natural environs, the menu’s a seasonally inspired affair, where dishes come in sumptuous portions you won’t want to share, packed with punchy flavours.
The dishes all evolve regularly, but you can expect the likes of trout served with turnip tops and pink fir potatoes; king cabbage, potato and paprika dumplings; and mallard with braised red cabbage for mains, bolstered by sides and starters of radicchio with candied walnuts; smoked cod’s roe with Jerusalem artichokes; and pork and pistachio terrine. All of which washes down rather nicely with a glass or two from their natural and organically-steered wine list.
The grand finales come in the form of buttermilk pudding with honeycomb; a crumbly damson and lemon genoise, and an excellent dacquoise – a layered sponge made with pistachio and hazelnut meringue and buttercream.
It’s blooming marvellous.
NOTE: The Garden Café is open Monday to Friday 8am–5pm, Saturday 9am–4pm and Sunday 9am–5pm. Lunch is served 12-3pm, and dinner Tuesdays from 6-9pm. You can find out more and book online right HERE.
The Garden Café | The Garden Museum, Lambeth Palace Road, SE1 7LB
Like combining dining and culture? Check out the Whitechapel Refectory