Centrally secluded on the lesser traversed streets of St James’s is the Michelin-starred restaurant Seven Park Place by William Drabble. Occupying the ground floor of the luxury hotel – St James’s Hotel and Club, the restaurant has recently re-launched following an extensive renovation under the design expertise of Russell Sage Studio.
The creative eye behind Fife Arms, Goring Hotel and Neptune Restaurant among others, this revamp has drawn a breath of fresh air to the restaurant for its 10th anniversary. From a variety of impressive new headline dishes, a cocktail menu, sommelier station offering a seasonal food pairing experience alongside an elegant new bar and expanded dining room space, the Michelin-starred restaurant gives fine-dining aficionados a wealth of new reasons to visit.
Growing up in Norfolk, executive chef William Drabble’s passion for fine food roots from the quality of ingredients he came in contact with from local farms and suppliers. Building up his culinary heritage, having worked across some of England’s most influential Michelin-starred hotels and restaurants before joining St. James’s Hotel and Club in September 2009, his cooking champions a contemporary French style using locally sourced, seasonal ingredients with dishes that continually redevelop with the seasons from lighter summer dishes to rustic influences throughout the winter months.
William allows for the natural flavours of each dish to lead, elevating the quality with thoughtful culinary pairings. There are no cutting corners here, succeeding a procession of freshly baked and carefully assembled aperitifs, we resume with an interesting combination of slow-cooked pork galette underneath three fat butter-poached langoustines with apple and vadouvan (an Indian spice blend) paired with a 2017 German Fritz Haag Riesling. Other examples of starters included baked fillet of red mullet with red wine and goat cheese crumble, indulgent seared foie gras with prune puree and turnips or roast quail with caramelised orange purée, warm orange and a hazelnut dressing.
Main courses include a roasted monkfish tail with savoy cabbage, wild mushrooms and roasted chicken emulsion, paired with a fruity Italian Soave Terre di Brognoligo Cecilia Beretta white, alongside a pink honey glazed breast of duck with parsnip puree, lightly grilled pears and thyme with a bold 2015 Spanish Albéitar red. Other mains also available from William and his team included a saddle of lamb with onions and rosemary or a roast breast and braised leg of Rugh Estate chicken with vin jaune and wild mushrooms. Main courses were followed by a selection of soft and hard cuts from the restaurant’s large cheese trolley that was wheeled over to our table, a selection of petit fours and a Portuguese dessert wine.
Four AA Rosettes and the Michelin star were awarded to Seven Park Place in 2011 and a second star is potentially on the horizon for William and his team having now established one of the UK’s most talented kitchens. This newly refined bar and dining space at Seven Park Place set the perfect stage allowing diners to experience the highest quality ingredients from across the UK, presented in the finest form. With this attention to detail in the kitchen, the team must be consistent across the board.
This extends to the service which on occasion didn’t comparatively match up – notably with a lack of knowledge communicated from the kitchen surrounding the dishes. This allows some room for improvement for the restaurant but shouldn’t hold you back from visiting, especially with a string of notable accolades to be aware of. These include from The World of Fine Wine, AA Notable Wine List Award, Wine Spectator’s Best of Award of Excellence and Open Table’s Diner’s Choice Award.
Address: 7-8 Park Place, St. James’s, London, SW1A 1LS
Phone: 020 7316 1600