Down Hall to open new modern British restaurant this month

Luxury Essex country house hotel, Down Hall has today announced the opening of a new modern British restaurant this month, Garden Room.

It will open on 14 July with new Executive Chef Graham Noonan-Chatham at the helm, prioritising micro-seasonality and home-grown produce from the hotel’s new kitchen garden.

Set within the hotel’s 110 acres of landscaped gardens and woodland, the 1,161 sq ft restaurant will house 60 covers and has been reconceptualised and designed by Rumana Swinton.

In an extension of the restaurant’s horticultural surroundings, bold, botanical colour scheme blends with feature wall marble topped tables, organic shaped lighting and wall panels depicting naturalistic landscapes.

Garden Room’s daily-changing menus will centre around the produce grown in the hotel’s own kitchen garden, with an emphasis on fresh and clean flavours.

Head Gardener David Parkin will work hand-in-hand with Noonan-Chatham, using organic growing methods to bring the best seasonal ingredients to the table. For those ingredients that they cannot grow themselves, Down Hall will work with select and sustainable local producers and growers.

The à la carte menu will feature starters such as poached Norfolk lobster with Bedlam farm squash, salty fingers and trout roe; a main course of Risotto Primavera packed with the garden’s freshly picked vegetables and herbs; and desserts including Manjari dark chocolate ganache with pistachio and candied ginger ice cream.

A seven-course tasting menu will offer a masterclass in micro-seasonality, with dishes such as summer gazpacho with smoked almonds; treacle cured longhorn beef fillet and stout braised short rib with shallot purée and hispi cabbage; and roasted pineapple with spiced rum, lime meringue and Earl Grey ice cream.

The classic cocktail list showcases local gins, with a drinks list featuring the Clover Club, Rhubarb Collins and Down Hall Signature. An extensive wine list, with 15 vintages available by the glass, will sit alongside a wide selection of local gins, beers and spirits.

General Manager, Ken Flockhart, commented, “This has been such an exciting time for Down Hall and we are delighted to see Garden Room finally come to fruition.

'By bringing a contemporary design into our historic building and showcasing the produce cultivated in our new kitchen gardens, Garden Room will bring the outside in and offer the perfect backdrop for Graham’s hyper-seasonal menus.”

Noonan-Chatham added, “It is such a joy to come on board at a time of change and development and I can’t wait for our guests to see the incredible new restaurant that we have created.

'The team find such inspiration in our spectacular surroundings and that is very much the ethos of Garden Room – we are championing our landscape and bringing it to the heart of everything we do.”