National Theatre raises the curtain on new restaurants

06 October 2014 by
National Theatre raises the curtain on new restaurants

The National Theatre on London's Southbank is re-launching its food and beverage offer with brasserie named House, an open-kitchen café (Kitchen), a craft beer pub (the Understudy), and a new restaurant behind the theatre itself (the Green Room).

All venues will open in late October.

Working across all four locations will be executive chef Simon Flint, who was previously head chef at the Groucho Club, and has also worked at Soho House, Daphne's, Le Caprice and the Ivy.

House is an all-day brasserie, offering a river view and access to the Southbank area. It will serve European-style dishes, such as wild halibut with razor clams and chorizo, roast lamb rump with mint and caper relish, or lemon and lime tart with sherbet ice-cream.

On the site of the former Mezzanine, the brasserie has been refurbished to include its own entrance directly from the riverfront. Its décor includes contrasting wood colours, 1970s-style white chairs, and fabric hangings showing contemporary interpretations of London maps, designed by Ismini Samanidou.

Kitchen will be the open-kitchen café, and will also feature a bakery and a large outdoor seating area. It will focus on healthier, lighter dishes in an informal setting, such as half a baked grapefruit with brown moscavado sugar, French toast, or toasted pikelets with butter. It will also sell products such as jam, pickles, cheese and freshly-baked bread.

The craft beer pub will be known as the Understudy, and serve a wide bar list, plus cocktails and bar snacks such as smoky olives and pork crackling. The site used to be the theatre's stage door and storage area, but has now been stripped out to include glass bays facing the river.

The new off-site venue will be called the Green Room, offering a restaurant-bar and garden aiming to provide a relaxed space, just behind the theatre. Developed by local social organisation the Coin Street Community Builders, it has been built on previously unused land, and is aiming to be in-situ for five years before the land is needed for permanent redevelopment.

Its dishes will include options such as Calabresa sausage hot dog with pico de gallo relish; lobster mac and cheese; and a two-minute steak.

The overall development programme, named NT Future, will also include the expansion of the theatre bookshop, and will coincide with the forthcoming new season of the Dorfman Theatre (previously known as the Cottesloe Theatre).

Patrick Harrison, director of commercial operations at the National Theatre, said: "We are very excited about the upcoming launch of our new spaces, which will offer Londoners exciting new additions to shopping and eating on the ever popular South Bank.

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