Even if you didn’t follow London restaurants or bars, even if you’d been living in a nuclear bunker and eating baked beans for the past 15 years with a colander on her head, you’d most probably have heard of Ollie Dabbous. In cheffing terms, the man is equivalent to Prince, with a legion of loyal fans chanting his name on the Notting Hill spot that was once his eponymous restaurant. His latest project, Hide, has just opened, but until last week the only place you could taste the superstar’s dishes was at Henrietta Hotel, the sleek Covent Garden boutique hotel.
All the menus follow the seasonal and fresh, with Sunday brunch being a simple affair which consists of creating your own ideal plate from the list of options or choosing from one of the pre-made dishes. I went for a slow cooked and tangy Shakshuka (£12); served fresh out of the oven and in a black skillet bowl, a combination of white onion, chopped tomatoes and peppers made up the rich sauce encasing two runny eggs. Eggs and avo (£14 from the build-your-own-brunch option) are also on the menu, served either scrambled, fried or translucently poached - the latter wobbling on my friend’s chunk of sourdough.
Drinks revolve around the bar’s take on bloody marys, with three twists on the essential breakfast boozing drink. Not fancying the brunch cocktails, I listed my favourite flavours to the barstaff who magicked up a Fatal Woman (£9.50) - a mix of gin, lemon, grapefruit, egg white and Thai basil. And while Dabbous is apparently going for two Michelin Stars at his new restaurant, it was the simplicity of Henrietta Hotel that won me over, from the easy, hangover-friendly Sunday brunch menu through to slick interiors of cactus green arm chairs and jungle print wallpaper.
Brunch is served 11.30am-4pm every Sunday at Henrietta Hotel, 14-15 Henrietta Street, London, WC2E 8QH.