T&C tests: Beck at Brown’s

Heinz Beck’s newest venture promises a feast of Italian flavours in elegant surroundings

Images courtesy of Beck at Brown’s

It’s easy to forget that not so long ago, dining in hotels was thought to be infradig – it’s really only in the past decade that the concept has undergone a gradual renaissance, with a number of top chefs launching destination restaurants in both town and country. The latest venture making waves in the industry is Heinz Beck’s arrival at Brown’s Hotel in Mayfair; his casual Italian restaurant offers classic cuisine in a sophisticated interior designed by Olga Polizzi.

Our visit began with an aperitif of the signature sparkling cocktail, made with peach and champagne, before we dived straight into the starters, which came in generous portions and were full of flavour. The whole burrata, served with marinated courgettes, was as creamy as they come, while the octopus salad, aside from being very pretty to look ahead, was well matched by crunchy celery and sweet vine tomatoes. Mains were simple but authentic: the artichoke risotto was rich in fruity, nutty Parmesan, while the tender beef fillet was nicely complemented by bitter chicory leaves and sharp horseradish mayonnaise.

Desserts were large enough to share between two (not that we did) and paid homage to old Italian favourites. The tiramisu was served affogato-style, with espresso-flavoured sauce poured over it at the table, while the chocolate tart consisted of a smooth, creamy ganache encased in cocoa pastry and accompanied by rum-infused ice-cream. Stay for coffee and petits-four if you can, relax for a little while on your comfortable banquette and then, suitably satiated, hop straight in a taxi home. 

Beck at Brown’s, Albemarle Street, London W1



T&C tests: Restaurant James Sommerin, Penarth, Wales 

Behind the scenes at Charles Heidsieck

How to celebrate the Royal wedding