St Martin’s House, in Upper St Martin’s Lane, opened in March 2022 by Aspirational Brands – it’s their flagship restaurant – offering all-day dining. Location wise it is ideal for theatre-goers or anyone just wishing to be in the heart of the West End.
It looks stylish with its long windowed facade and black frames and plenty of pink flowers offering an appealing lift in colour. They say that the floral displays are a nod to the days of the flower markets that appeared in the nearby Covent Garden.
Dining is available on two floors – the ground floor and the first floor is the mezzanine. The ground floor sports a long bar and so does have a more intimate vibe to it.
As it was a sunny day, the terrace was available and we decided to eat al fresco and take in the sounds of Upper St Martin’s Lane especially the colourful tuk-tuks and their blaring pop music zipping by and watching the clientele making their way into the illustrious Stringfellows club opposite.
The bright flower decor at the entrance and hanging above the bar adds a colourful lift the dim lighting throwing shadows on the darkwood flooring, long dark bar with black stools and the dark green-hued banquet booths. There are some interesting poster prints on the walls too.
One floor up on the mezzanine it’s a similar scene, perhaps a little more officious with 50 covers, perfect for a Whodunit type mystery.
Food & Drink
St Martin’s House menu majors on British cuisine, made with locally sourced ingredients. There’s variety of dishes from steak tartare, a including the 48-hour braised in bone marrow short rib, the steak pie and a vegan cauliflower steak brassica flavoured with chimichurri, sprouted broccoli, squash puree, crispy shallots and pine nuts.
I started with the Jack fruit cake – jack fruit usually has a very mild flavour akin to a mango – and it sounded unusual. Two cakes came served with lemon aioli and micro parsley. The cakes were, understandably bland in flavour made interesting with the lemon aioli.
My partner was excited to order the St Martins Scotch egg made with St Ewes farm 64 degree egg. Though it looked traditional the flavours were shockingly intense thanks to the Dorset venison chorizo, caulfat, and spinach that replaced the more traditional onion stuffing and pork meat.
For the main course, I chose the pan-roasted seabass, which came with red peppers and chorizo puree, potato and chorizo cake, charred tenderstem broccoli, pea shoots & lemon oil.
My partner chose the traditional British fish and chips which came with edamame puree – a mush pea look-alike, house tartare sauce, malt vinegar dust.
Both were executed very well though it occurred to me that Chef Amanda has a penchant for chorizo.
Desserts are always a must-have and we went for the chocolate fondant and the Eton mess and shared them.
There is an extensive drinks menu with some eyebrow-raising cocktails including the Violet Yuzu Margarita, strawberry and Bailies and the salted caramel Espresso Martini. If only I wasn’t driving!
VERDICT: A pleasant venue, in a great location, ideal for those easy eating evenings with friends.
Check out the menus as St Martins House here.