This weekend saw the launch of The Modern Pantry in Finsbury Square, housed in the art deco Alphabeta Building, it’s the second venture from Anna Hansen and Head Chef Rob Mcleary.
Taking inspiration from Anna’s Danish roots and the Danish Modern movement, New York based designers, Avroko have used kept things understated and clean cut with white wash walls, graphic tiles, high ceilings and teak, oak and walnut woods.
Dark blue and off white hues throughout the restaurant represent the Flora Danica, a complete atlas off indigenous Danish plants that was created in the 18th and 19th centuries. And just as no two plants are the same, all forty of the blown glass pendant light fixtures are different from each other. They’ve even created their very own Flora Annica, which is inspired by Anna’s love of nature, which her grandparents installed in her when she was little – the pieces which feature plants that share a commonality between New Zealand and England are found throughout the restaurant, but many of the pieces are in the private dining room that seats 28.
The restaurant is split into two; the 20-seater solid oak bar that will serve up tapas and sherry- based cocktails and will be open from 7am for light breakfasts and tapas from midday with dishes including smoked cassava and fenugreek croquettes and quince aioli and Morcilla mole, salted cocoa nib hen egg and spiced apple relish – Rob Mcleary is all about cooking up bold flavours and colour ingredients. The restaurant serving up the a la carte menu will be open for breakfasts, lunch and dinner with the likes of devilled quail, shaved kohlrabi, crisp vine leaves, capers, yuzu and crème fraiche and squid ink battered Cornish cod, coriander and white poppy seed besan chips with seaweed relish and brown crab mayonnaise appearing on the menu.
Head barman Nabil Mehdinejad is returning to pre-war traditions and using fortified wine as a base for the cocktails and will be focusing on sherry whilst other spirits will either draw on Danish fairy tales or the history of Finsbury square.
The Modern Pantry Finsbury Square: Open Now, 14 Finsbury Square, London, EC2A 1AH, www.themodernpantry.co.uk