When we heard that Circus had been given a refurbishment we were expecting something drastic, however the changes are more subtle than that. Charlotte McCarthy of Lot London (formerly of Tom Dixon) has come back to oversee the design (she’s previously been commissioned for the Dock Kitchen and rooftop bar and spa at the Mondrian Sea Containers Hotel.
The room has been completely opened up providing more space and they’ve extended the bar too along with new cocktails. For a cocktail that is as impressive and dramatic as it is delicious go for the Beast of Byakko which is completely black due to the charcoal powder in it, but actually tastes like you’re on the beach in Hawaii due to the Jamaican rum, Havana Anejo Especial, guava and pineapple juice and coconut cream.
New lighting has been fitted and the furniture has been given a makeover too, we’ve also heard there are more installations coming in September but it’s all very hush hush so we can’t tell you anymore /we actually can’t, because even we don’t know.
There are new acts too, because you’re there for the entertainment really aren’t you? The acts had more of a story to them, they’re cheeky, coquettish and tantalising. We had just been watching a pair of 1950s pin up girls twirling on a hoop and had been enjoying our prawn har gau when a couple decided Circus wasn’t for them. Or maybe they weren’t for each other. They were shouting, arguing and making quite a scene in the middle of the restaurant. I cringed with embarrassment, my friend whispered, ‘how can they do that in public?’ Then the guy grabbed the girl, dragged her on stage and performed a passionate tango, to an audible sigh of relief from the restaurant.
The gymnasts continued to perform as though their bodies had no bones, contorting themselves into unimaginable shapes as we ate Iberico Pork with yuzu and Black Angus fillet (unfortunately slightly tough) with shitake mushrooms, asparagus and caramel soy, which was so good I would have done shots of it. A new sushi chef has joined the team and there are also South American influences throughout the menu. You can order starters and main dishes but we say order a few smaller dishes and share.
To finish a chocolate and caramel fondant hit the spot with a malt and milk ice-cream and a passion fruit cheesecake, had a subtle sweet flavour.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again Circus is a place of pure escapism, a chance to drink good cocktails, eat and be mesmerised by the acts.