The air is scented with citrus as the waiter pours another glass of champagne; the gentle chatter of the Mayfair set forms the perfect backing track to an idyllic sunny afternoon spent in one of the prettiest courtyards ever to grace Instagram.
On a day that is even hotter than Italy, one sits in the glory of an exclusive location in London’s poshest neighbourhood. So discreet is this venue, it is tucked away in a hidden courtyard in the historic heart of Mayfair. For an authentic taste of the Amalfi coast right in the exclusive Mayfair area of London, look no further than Hush.
Perfect for lunch time meet ups, the beautiful courtyard dining space is currently inspired by the Amalfi coast with an exclusive and buzzy atmosphere that transports you right to the heart of Italy. The entrance to Hush conveys all the romance of an elite wedding venue with a beautiful floral inspired archway draped in seasonal blooms.
During summer, lemons adorn each table bringing a sunny disposition to the dining experience as one sips on a Malfy gin cocktail infused with citrus fruit imported direct from Italy. Come Autumn, the arch is adorned with fall leaves and winter brings rich Christmas colours, it is constantly changing. All year round this is al fresco dining at its finest in a Lancashire Court alleyway opposite Fenwick’s on New Bond Street.
All around is the hum of genteel chatter and as the afternoon goes on the volume begins to ramp up. This elite dining destination is the perfect place for corporate drinks with colleagues, as not only is Hush one of London’s best outside dining spaces, but the brasserie is also spread across two floors of a Mayfair Townhouse with plenty of space for large togethers.
The venue opened in 1999, yet it remains one of the capital’s best kept secrets. It is no mystery that the venue is co-owned by Sir Roger Moore’s son, Geoffrey. Shareholders include Evgeny Lebedev and the late Sir Roger Moore himself. Hush has been honoured with the prestigious Test of Time award at the Tatler Restaurant Awards and more recently the winner of Best Design at the London Club and Bar Awards 2018.
The main restaurateur is Justin Barber who has since opened two smaller Hush Brasseries in Holborn, and St Paul’s, but the original remains the most exclusive. Restauranteur Jamie Barber is the founder and CEO of Hush restaurant as well as the Hache Burgers chain and the Cabana Brasilian Barbecue group. He also founded and co-owned restaurants including Villandry, Japanese restaurant Sake No Hana, and Italian casual dining brand, Kitchen Italia. Barber trained as an entertainment lawyer at media law firm Harbottle and Lewis but left to set up Hush with Geoffrey Moore.
Inside one will find two dining spaces, an award-winning cocktail lounge, extensive private dining options. Lunchtime food options include elegant starters like torched salmon sashimi with avocado cream, wasabi, soy and lime dressing followed by a lemon butter lobster roll served with Aspen fries, pine nut and coleslaw.
Around 2pm, a Mayfair afternoon tea is served, and instead of champagne it is a gin and jam affair. Delicacies of smoked salmon and cream cheese on German rye, smoked ham with onion jam and watercress on tortano sourdough, manchego and quince jelly on soft white, corn-fed chicken and tarragon mayonnaise on tortano sourdough are balanced with a glass of Canard-Duchêne Cuvée Léonie Hush gin and tonic. Then, like any respectable afternoon tea, earl grey tea accompanies warm scones with clotted cream and jams and a selection of petit fours, macaroons, mini lemon tart, Bakewell tart and cheesecake bites.
After a few drinks with friends, or for a special occasion, one might want to book a meal in the self-contained The Sir Roger Moore Room, named after the Bond actor who is indeed one of the restaurant’s investors. Perhaps one would want to nip back to their hotel for a change of clothes for this venue oozes the same class as a Bond movie with its 1930s inspired restaurant, cocktail bar and private dining rooms. It is handily located to all the Bond Street boutiques and therefore a favourite dining choice of guests of nearby Claridges.
For dinner one might sample the fillet steak béarnaise with rosemary and confit garlic, hand cut chips or perhaps a Wilshire Truffle. In the summer, the best seat in the house for couples is sat beneath the romantic blooms in the courtyard where attentive waiters create an amorous soiree. What better way to see the sun set as the waiter pours another glass of Chateauneuf-du-Pape or Piedimont. And of course, one must save room for Hush’s famous mars bar cheesecake, which is legendary.
Alternatively, there is private dining in the Sir Roger Moore Room on the second floor where one can create an exclusive party atmosphere. The room has its own bar cloakroom and kitchen. In terms of décor, it features a burnt orange wraparound banquette, wooden panelling and parquet flooring throughout. Flooded with an abundance of natural daylight the space is ideal for corporate lunches, dinners, award ceremonies, private parties and wedding celebrations. Blades is located on the first floor of Hush adjacent to the Aviator cocktail lounge. This is an elegant backdrop for canape networking events, birthday celebration meals, baby showers and intimate dinners.
In these unique rooms private dining options revolve around three set menus. One example includes chargrilled king prawns, garlic and herb butter, saffron aioli, crispy duck and spring onion croquettes, spring pea cream heritage beetroot salad, goat’s cheese, pomegranate and radish for starters. This is followed by rump of Welsh lamb, smoked aubergine, girolle mushrooms, rosemary jus, tortelloni of spring peas, crushed peas, wild garlic olive oil, blackened miso salmon, grilled asparagus and miso sesame dressing all served with charlotte potatoes and mixed herb salad. For dessert one enjoys a warm cherry Bakewell tart, crème fraiche and cherry sauce.
For a special occasion, or just because, the champagne list includes bottles of Bollinger, Ruinart Blanc de Blancs or a wonderful Perrier Jouët Blason Rosé. As for the cocktails, they flow endlessly and when the DJ gets mixing his tunes there is a party in town at this exclusive address. There is the famous Malfy cocktails – the Sunset Sbagliato with Malfy Con Arancia, Campari, Prosecco, Dry Vermouth, on the Rocks, a Garden Martini or a Highland Fruitbowl.
It’s no surprise that this hidden oasis in a cobbled Mayfair backstreet is sublime. This is a secret that is just too good to keep. Hush!
Address: Hush, 8 Lancashire Court, W1S 1EY