Mayfair might have a lot of things going for it, but in terms of culinary experiences, the West London enclave has long been known for stately tradition more than modern innovation. That changed, however, when the highly anticipated Le Chabanais opened its doors on Mount Street this July.
Why such excitement? Well, behind Le Chabanais Mayfair is one of Europe's hottest chefs, the Franco-Basque Inaki Aizpitarte, whose restaurant Le Chateaubriand, Paris' onzième is a regular in The World's 50 Best Restaurants (this year standing at number 27). Bringing with him Le Chateaubriand's head chef Paul Boudier, the move to London offers a continuation of the 'cuisine de vagabond' style that has brought Aizpitarte recognition, awards, and an unshakeable reputation as a maverick.
Le Chabanais menu
Simple and changing daily, according to what looks best at the market that day, the menu at Le Chateaubriand Paris is ostensibly modern French, but regularly takes in influences from Asia to South America – Aizpitarte's take on Peruvian ceviche regularly has reviewers at their most gushing – but famously offers only a set tasting menu twice a night (a steal at 70€).
Here in London, while there is a similarly broad ranges of flavours, dishes will be served a la carte, with the same levels of pricing.
While it was a few years ago now that the idea of bistronomy really took off amongst the high-end chefs of Paris, Inaki's arrival on these shores is a welcome invitation to Londoners to involve themselves in a movement dedicated to removing the stuffy, haute atmosphere (as well as the haute prices) of the Michelin-starred outfits, leaving only world-class food in simple, French-inspired surrounds.
The verdict seems to be mixed, so far. Critics have enjoyed the unusual décor (marble and brass materials, round tables), but the meals haven't always lived up to the price tags.
A bold new addition to the already stellar array of restaurants in Mayfair, head to Le Chabanais website to join their mailing list.
|What||Le Chabanais, Mount Street: London offshoot of Le Chateaubriand, Paris|
|Where||Le Chabanais, 8 Mount Street, London, W1K 3NF | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Green Park (underground)|
25 May 15 – 31 Mar 16, 12:00 PM – 12:00 AM
|Website||Click here to go to the Chabanais website.|