New European restaurant Gezellig will open with a carefully created wine list in Holborn Town Hall, London, in May 2019.
The restaurant, which takes its name from the Dutch word for an atmosphere that allows good times to happen, is backed by restaurateur Rebecca Mascarenhas.
Mascarenhas is also sole owner of HomeSW15 in Putney and co-owner, with chef Philip Howard, of Richmond upon Thames’ Sonny’s Kitchen and Michelin-starred London restaurants Elystan Street and Kitchen W8.
The concept is a collaboration between sommelier Wieteke Teppema and chef Graham Long, with James Comyn leading front of house.
Teppema, Long and Comyn have all worked together during their careers, with CVs including London restaurants the Square in Mayfair, Elystan Street in Chelsea, Pied à Terre in Fitzrovia and the Ledbury in Notting Hill.
Comyn explained: “We wanted to get together to create the food we like to eat, the wine we like to drink, and the relaxed atmosphere where we would be happy to spend all of our time. As much as Gezellig will be about great food, we do also want to craft a bit of a drinking den.”
Teppema added: “We are all wine lovers, and our list will be priced to be drunk and enjoyed. If we like a wine, it will go on the list. If customers enjoy the classics from Germany, Burgundy, Piedmont and the Rhone Valley, then they will be delighted with our selections… and the odd orange wine may also find its way onto the list. And we are looking at lots of fine wine but without the high price tags.”
Long will offer a classical menu with influences from throughout Europe. He said: “It’s not about dressing up dishes, rather letting the produce speak for itself, and not being afraid to keep things simple.”
Dishes will include pot-roast turnip, duck hearts, liver parfait, sorrel and sweet duck broth; roast loin of cod, crisp polenta, fresh crayfish, sweetcorn, bisque and wild fennel; as well as roast loin of suckling pig, crispy belly and braised shoulder, anchovy, monk’s beard and Jansson’s temptation.
As well as an à la carte menu, the restaurant will offer a set lunch at £25 for two courses, and the bar will offer a menu of snacks and small plates.
Housed in Grade II-listed Holborn Town Hall, the two-storey restaurant will have 50 covers and bar top seating for 15, as well as two private dining rooms. A bar area will be on the mezzanine level, overlooking the restaurant.
A wine list of approximately 350 bins will start at £25 a bottle, with around 20 available by the glass from £5.