After a triumphant six-week residency at Brown’s Hotel in the run-up to last Christmas, it’s a welcome surprise that internationally acclaimed chef Heinz Beck, best known for his three-Michelin-starred La Pergola in Rome, is returning to the Mayfair hotel with a permanent restaurant, Beck at Brown’s. Opening on April 16, the restaurant, previously run by Mark Hix, will be a “casual Italian” closer in style to Beck’s recently opened Attimi.
The Bavarian-born chef will focus on “a casual dining menu of classic Italian dishes, using the finest seasonal British ingredients”. Expect a light menu featuring starters such as burrata di Andria with marinated courgette, and dressed crab with grilled romaine lettuce and wild herbs. Primi plates include tagliolini lobster with smoked aubergine cream and chilli; main courses will feature aged Rhug Estate striploin (steak) with truffle mash and rosemary sauce (to share); and puddings include tiramisu affogato and Sorrento lemon cheesecake.
The interior, meanwhile, has been redesigned by director of design Olga Polizzi. Its bar, restaurant and private dining space are divided by bronze screens with bright botanical greens and turquoise contrasting against the original 19th-century oak-panelled walls.
Cocktail maestro and former president of the United Kingdom Bartenders’ Guild Salvatore Calabrese also returns to Brown’s after working with Beck in December. Taking up residency at The Donovan Bar, which will reopen on April 20, Calabrese has created a new cocktail menu as a homage to the bar’s namesake – revered fashion photographer, the late Terence Donovan; 16 new drinks are divided into four categories called High Exposure, Low Exposure, High Contrast and Low Contrast. Calabrese has also concocted a further selection of drinks made from his own vast collection of rare spirits from the past 300 years.
The stylish bar has also had a complete redesign by Polizzi, with interior designer Inge Moore. The pair have combined British racing green, white, grey and touches of gold to complement photography by Donovan, 50 of whose iconic black-and-white prints line the bar walls – part of the Forte family’s private collection, which is the largest in the world of the photographer’s works.